Tuesday, January 01, 2013

Hartsfield - Jackson Atlanta International (KATL), Atlanta, Georgia: Airport leads nation in guns confiscated


ATLANTA — Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport once again leads the nation in the number of guns confiscated at security checkpoints.  

 The number reached 100 in 2012, and that concerns some travelers.

"You catch most of them, but there could be the one or two that get through. It's a danger. It represents a real danger. And yes, it does frighten me," Gladys McMillan told Channel 2's Tom Jones.

The Transportation Security Administration confirmed that 100 handguns were confiscated in 2012 at the airport.

Spokesman Jonathan Allen said that compares to 69 guns that agents found in 2011.

McMillian explained why she thought Atlanta led the nation.

"It may have something to do with the fact that you're one of the busiest or largest airports," she said.

Allen shared that viewpoint, citing the huge volumes of people that come through Atlanta.

Several notable people have been arrested after, police say, they tried to take their firearms through checkpoints.

The arrests include Chick-fil-A executive Sheryl Rexrode and Harold Duncan, a member of the rap group Travis Porter.

Several people arrested said they forgot their guns were in their bags.

"I can't imagine forgetting that I have a firearm on my person," traveler Rob Scott said.

He said he put his unloaded firearm in a locked box, took it to the TSA, and they checked it in and put it on the plane.

Scott wonders how people could be so careless.

"To have a firearm you got to be a responsible person, and not knowing where your firearm is, especially when you're going through a checkpoint ... " Scott said

The Dallas-Fort Worth Airport was next on the list, with 75 guns confiscated this year.

The TSA reports 1,500 firearms were found at all the nation's airports combined this year.

That's an increase from the 1,300 guns found last year, they said.

Story, video and photos:   http://www.ajc.com



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