Man charged after loaded gun found in backpack at Pittsburgh International Airport checkpoint

MOON TOWNSHIP, Pa. — A Washington County man is facing charges after a loaded gun was found in his backpack at Pittsburgh International Airport early Monday, Allegheny County police said.

Around 5:35 a.m., TSA officers observed a loaded SigSauer 9mm handgun in the man’s backpack at the main security checkpoint and alerted county police. The man told police he didn’t know that his gun was in his backpack.

It was determined that the 54-year-old man from Venetia did not have a valid concealed carry permit, according to police. He was arrested and charged with carrying a firearm without a license. The FBI was notified and the gun is now in the possession of county police.

“The traveler who was caught with his handgun this morning told us that he didn’t know he had it with him,” said Karen Keys-Turner, TSA’s federal security director for the airport. “If you own a firearm, it is important to know where it is at all times. After all, it is a deadly weapon and the importance of knowing its whereabouts should not be taken lightly.”

Passengers who bring firearms into an airport checkpoint can face federal civil fines from the Transportation Security Administration up to $10,000. Repeat offenders can be fined up to $13,910.

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