Press Club

Alexandria man cited after nearly two dozen weapons found in carry-on at DCA

Bringing a large stash of knives to the airport probably wasn’t the sharpest idea, in retrospect.

An Alexandria man received a citation yesterday (May 4) after federal authorities say he tried to bring 22 knives and a pair of brass knuckles through security at Reagan National Airport.

The knife collection allegedly found in the man’s carry-on bag included scalpels, long-blade knives, throwing knives, a dagger and a switchblade.

The Transportation Security Administration said the weapons were flagged via X-ray at a security checkpoint.

“TSA would have had no issue had all 23 of these items been packed in a checked bag, but passengers certainly cannot carry these types of weapons into the cabin of an aircraft,” the agency noted.

The full TSA press release is below.

An Alexandria, Va., man was cited by police after Transportation Security Administration (TSA) officers unloaded a stash of 23 prohibited items from the man’s carry-on bag at one of the security checkpoints at Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport (DCA) yesterday, Wednesday, May 4. Twenty-three items were knives including scalpels and martial arts throwing knives.

Among the items that were pulled from the carry-on bag were:

  • Nine disposable scalpels
  • Eight folding locking-blade knives
  • Three martial arts throwing knives
  • One dagger
  • One switchblade
  • One pair of brass knuckles

The TSA officers located the weapons when the man’s carry-on bag entered the security checkpoint’s X-ray machine. The bag was pulled for a search and the weapons stash of weapons was removed. The Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority Police were alerted and responded to the checkpoint and issued the man a citation.

TSA would have had no issue had all 23 of these items been packed in a checked bag, but passengers certainly cannot carry these types of weapons into the cabin of an aircraft. He should have downloaded the myTSA app, so he could easily have used the “Can I bring?” feature, which would have advised him to pack the items in a checked bag. That would have sharpened his knowledge as to what can and cannot go into a carry-on bag.

“When passengers have prohibited items among their carry-on items, it slows down the screening process,” said John Busch, TSA’s Federal Security Director for the airport. “Travelers play a role in the efficiency of checkpoint screening by knowing what should and should not be packed in a carry-on bag. In addition to the myTSA app, travelers can tweet a question to @AskTSA, send a question to our social media team through Facebook Messenger, or go to our web site, www.tsa.gov, and in the upper right-hand corner of the homepage is the handy ‘Can I bring?’ feature that enables you to type in the name of an item to learn where it should be packed,” he said.

“Even in the sometimes chaotic environment of the screening checkpoints, the TSA officers at our airport do an amazing job every day by keeping dangerous items out of the aircraft cabin,” Busch said. “It’s important to acknowledge them and the significance of their mission.”

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