Transportation Security Administration officers at Charleston’s Yeager Airport on Sunday detected a 9mm handgun in a Florida man’s carry-on bag, along with a magazine loaded with 15 bullets.
Yeager Airport Police confiscated the weapon and briefly detained and questioned the passenger, who now faces a possible federal civil penalty, according to TSA spokeswoman Lisa Farbstein.
Federal civil penalties for passengers found to be carrying loaded firearms, or firearms carried in close proximity to ammunition, at airport security checkpoints range from $3,000 to $10,000, according to the TSA.
The TSA officers’ work on Sunday accounted for the first firearm detection of the year at Yeager’s security checkpoint. In 2016, 10 weapons turned up at the screening station. Last year, only four firearm detections occurred at the airport due to plummeting passenger boarding numbers following the arrival of the COVID-19 pandemic.