NORFOLK, Va. (WAVY) — A Suffolk man has been cited after he was caught with a loaded gun at Norfolk International Airport over the weekend.
According to TSA officers at ORF, the man’s carrying a 9mm caliber handgun loaded with 14 bullets, including one in the chamber, inside his carry-on bags which triggered an alarm at the security checkpoint.
Norfolk Aiport Police responded to the incident, confiscated the handgun and cited the man on a weapons violation. The case has been forwarded to the Norfolk Commonwealth’s Attorney for a possible criminal prosecution.
This is the 6th gun caught by TSA officers at ORF so far this year.
In 2021, TSA officers caught 23 guns at Norfolk International Airport. Nationwide, 5,972 firearms were caught overall at security checkpoints last year, 86% of which were loaded.
A typical first offense for carrying a loaded handgun into a checkpoint is $4,100 and can go as high as $13,669 depending on any mitigating circumstances. This applies to travelers with or without concealed gun carry permits because even though an individual may have a concealed carry permit, it does not allow for a firearm to be carried onto an airplane. In this case, the handgun was not loaded.
Passengers are permitted to travel with firearms in checked baggage if they are properly packaged and declared at their airline ticket counter to be transported in the belly of the plane. Guns are absolutely not permitted to be carried onto planes.
Checked firearms must be unloaded, packed in a hard-sided case, locked, and packed separately from ammunition. TSA has details on how to properly travel with a firearm and ammunition posted on its website.