Loaded handgun found in woman’s bag at Newport News/Williamsburg International Airport

Posted at 3:22 PM, Mar 24, 2015
and last updated 2015-03-24 17:06:41-04

Newport News, Va. – A Hampton woman was stopped by TSA officers at the Newport News/Williamsburg International Airport checkpoint on Monday, when officers detected a loaded gun in her carry-on bag, officials tell NewsChannel 3.

TSA officers detected the .380 caliber semi-automatic handgun loaded with five rounds in the woman’s carry-on bag as she was passing through the airport checkpoint.

The TSA officer who was staffing the checkpoint X-ray machine detected the handgun inside the traveler’s carry-on bag as it passed along the conveyor belt, NewsChannel 3 has learned.

TSA officers immediately contacted Airport Police, who responded and took possession of the gun and ammunition and cited the woman on a state weapons charge. The woman was ticketed to fly to Philadelphia, according to officials.

Weapons—including firearms, firearm parts and ammunition—are not permitted in carry-on bags, but can be transported in checked bags if they are unloaded, properly packed and declared to the airline. Passengers who bring firearms to the checkpoint are subject to possible criminal charges from law enforcement and civil penalties from TSA.

Passengers are permitted to travel with firearms in checked baggage if they are properly packaged and declared. Firearms must be unloaded, packed in a hard-side case, locked, and packed separately from ammunition. Firearm possession laws vary by state and locality. Travelers should familiarize themselves with state and local firearm laws for each point of travel prior to departure.

TSA has details on how to properly travel with a firearm posted on its web site, here.