Assemblyman Jim Cooper, D-Elk Grove, reportedly kept a semi-automatic loaded pistol confiscated from his suitcase at Sacramento International Airport on March 3.
Cooper, who was trying to board a flight, was arrested by the Airport Security Administration (TSA) at the airport after the gun was seen through an X-ray machine at a security checkpoint.
The Sacramento County sheriff’s legislator and former captain is also running for Sacramento County sheriff in this June’s primary. That election also includes Wilton resident Jim Barnes, a 22-year veteran of the Sacramento County Sheriff’s Office.
Although Cooper is allowed to carry a concealed weapon due to his background as a retired police officer, he is not allowed to possess a handgun in his hand luggage, TSA spokeswoman Lorie Dankers said.
“Let me start by saying that no passenger can carry a firearm in the cockpit of the aircraft,” he said. “Firearms must travel in checked baggage and be unloaded and stored in a stiff, closed briefcase.”
Dankers told Citizen this week that TSA officers routinely use X-ray machines to examine hand luggage, and that any inspection is stopped and airport law enforcement is notified whenever a firearm is discovered.
“At Sacramento International Airport which is the office of the Sacramento County Sheriff, and they are required to respond directly to the security checkpoint,” he said. “A law enforcement officer takes control of the firearm and removes the passenger and the weapon from the checkpoint.”
At that point, TSA is no longer involved in the situation, Dankers said.
“What happens next depends on law enforcement,” he said.
Dankers also addressed sanctions for taking a firearm to an airport security checkpoint.
“In addition to possible criminal summonses, the TSA can issue civil penalties of up to $ 10,000 for taking a firearm to the security checkpoint,” he said. “The TSA assesses each firearm incident on a case-by-case basis, but the factors that are taken into account in determining the amount of the civil penalty are whether the firearm was loaded and whether the ammunition was accessible.”
He stressed that a concealed weapons permit does not allow carrying firearms on a commercial aircraft.
“Even if a traveler has a concealed weapons permit, firearms are never allowed in hand luggage,” he said.
Cooper and Sacramento County Sheriff’s spokesman Rodney Grassmann were not contacted for comment, until the time of publication.
Local Assembly member has handgun confiscated at airport | News Source link Local Assembly member has handgun confiscated at airport | News