Loaded Rifle in Terminal Four

With air travel rules changing all the time, I needed to update my research when writing Flight 12: A Jess Kimball Thriller. The question? What are the rules for loaded guns on airplanes these days? The topic is fascinating. For example –

Did you hear about the doctor who was arrested with a loaded gun at the Phoenix International Airport last week?

Peter Nathan Steinmetz

According to media sources, police reports say Dr. Peter Nathan Steinmetz was carrying the AR-15 rifle over his shoulder as he ordered from Starbucks in Terminal 4, on the non-secure side of the terminal. In other words, he hadn’t been through the security check point. He said he was only at the airport to buy a cup of coffee.

A woman and her 17-year-old daughter say they got nervous when he manipulated the rifle so that it was pointed in their direction.

Dr. Steinmetz was arrested on suspicion of disorderly conduct with a weapon. Police believe he was trying to prove a point by having the gun at the airport.

It is NOT illegal to possess a gun while in the non-secure areas of an airport.

It IS illegal for non-authorized personnel to take a gun in carry-on baggage.
But that law is broken every day.

  • Nationwide, in 2013, the TSA found an average of five guns per day at airport security checkpoints.
  • According to the New York Times, about 80 percent of all guns found are loaded.
  • When confronted, most people have been issued appropriate concealed weapons permits, but say they forgot the gun was in their bag.
  • What happens next is determined by state or local laws. Authorities may let the traveler leave the gun on the ground, or, less often, the traveler may be arrested.
  • Guns are allowed in checked bags if appropriate procedures are followed.

Here are some of the weapons TSA collected from security check points at various airports this month:

TSA Guns

Guns confiscated at United States airports, from the Transportation Security Administration’s blog. Credit Transportation Security Administration

In Flight 12: A Jess Kimball Thriller, Jess Kimball packs her gun in her checked luggage for her flight to JFK. But her trip isn’t over yet. Will she be able to transport a weapon to Rome?

Follow the Flight 12 Adventure to find out!

Diane Capri Flight 12

Meanwhile —

Caffeinate and Carry On!

Diane Capri

p.s. Are you a member of the Diane Capri’s Exclusive Reading Group mailing list? It’s FREE! Just CLICK HERE to sign up and refer your friends, too. You’ll be glad you did, I promise. Can’t wait to see you there!


, , , , , , ,

Comments are closed.

Get Jack in the Green—Free!

Sign up FREE to my email list & start reading Jack in the Green in minutes...