Goochland man cited for loaded gun at RIC - WFXG FOX54 Augusta - Your News One Hour Earlier

Goochland man cited for loaded gun at RIC

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(Source: TSA) (Source: TSA)

A Goochland man is facing a citation after TSA says he tried to bring a loaded gun onto an airplane. The passenger was boarding a flight to Atlanta when agents spotted the .38 caliber gun inside his carry-on luggage. The man was cited and able to board his flight, but TSA kept the gun and the ammunition.

Guns and ammo are restricted on airplanes. It's a reminder worth repeating, especially since last year, TSA confiscated more than 1800 guns from carry-on bags nationwide. Just because you board a plane at Richmond's airport with a gun in your checked luggage, doesn't mean you're in the clear everywhere you go.

"I understand the right to bear arms and I can see how some people would say that's very important but an airport is a place where everybody should feel safe," passenger Emma Lynch said.

That's why there are rules when it comes to flying with firearms, though they vary depending where you fly.

"On your personal carry on, no. I think it ought to be stowed," passenger Claude Stocky said.

That may be ok in Virginia, but gun trainer James Reynolds has some advice when flying elsewhere.

"Make sure they know the laws are in the state they are physically in at the moment because that's the laws they are going to be held accountable to," Reynolds of Proactive Shooters said.

Take New York's two airports for example where there's a zero tolerance policy for guns, even if they're unloaded and secured. If you're traveling from an airport where gun rules are more lax and travel to one with stricter rules, you could end up in big trouble.

Last Fall, a 65 year old passenger found that out when he was put in handcuffs at New York's Laguardia Airport. Authorities say he packed his unloaded handgun in a checked bag, and even alerted the agent - but was still taken to jail.

"Planes have been diverted from one airport to another due to weather or mechanical emergencies or such and folks are not familiar with the carry laws of the states they end up in and they unfortunately get themselves in trouble because of that," Reynolds said.

So in the end it becomes the gun owner's responsibility to know the rules and determine if it's worth it to fly with a firearm.

Reynold's advice is good to know not only to avoid legal arrest, but also to avoid added expenses like bonding out of jail, having to pay to fly back to where you were arrested for court, and paying any citations associated with the crime.

TSA guidelines are listed online for passengers to know what's prohibited from checked luggage, or carry ons, or both.

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