Skip to comments.17-year-old missed flight to Jacksonville after agents inspected gun replica(design on purse)
Posted on 12/02/2011 11:14:58 AM PST by rawhide
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - A teenage girl's sense of style got her in trouble at the airport.
Vanessa Gibbs, 17, claims the Transportation Security Administration stopped her at the security gate because of the design of a gun on her handbag.
Gibbs said she had no problem going through security at Jacksonville International Airport, but rather, when she headed home from Virginia.
"It's my style, it's camouflage, it has an old western gun on it," Gibbs said.
But her preference for the pistol style didn't sit well with TSA agents at the Norfolk airport.
Gibbs said she was headed back home to Jacksonville from a holiday trip when an agent flagged her purse as a security risk.
"She was like, 'This is a federal offense because it's in the shape of a gun,'" Gibbs said. "I'm like, 'But it's a design on a purse. How is it a federal offense?'"
After agents figured out the gun was a fake, Gibbs said, TSA told her to check the bag or turn it over.
By the time security wrapped up the inspection, the pregnant teen missed her flight, and Southwest Airlines sent her to Orlando instead, worrying her mother, who was already waiting for her to arrive at JIA.
"Oh, it's terrifying. I was so upset," said Tami Gibbs, the teen's mom. "I was on the phone all the way to Orlando trying to figure out what was going on with her. It was terrifying. I don't ever want to go through it again."
Vanessa and her mom said it's hard to believe anyone could mistake the design on the purse for a real gun because it's just a few inches in size and it's hollow, not to mention Vanessa has taken it on planes before.
"I carried this from Jacksonville to Norfolk, and I've carried it from Norfolk to Jacksonville," Vanessa said. "Never once has anyone said anything about it until now."
TSA isn't budging on the handbag, arguing the phony gun could be considered a "replica weapon." The TSA says "replica weapons have prohibited since 2002."
It's a rule that Vanessa feels can't be applied to a purse.
"Common sense," she said. "It's a purse, not a weapon."
A TSA official at JIA said it's not that uncommon for passengers to wear something that could be considered a gun replica, but the official encourages everyone to check the prohibited items list, which can be found online or at the airport before going through security.
Video at link
Those people are f—ked in the head...
TSA agents are almost stupid enough to be congressmen! Almost!
That is an amazing purse, and that girl has great taste, but I don’t think it is crazy for the TSA to at least look closely at it.
I don’t fly and I don’t carry a purse.
I don’t dare go near TSA. Liberty is
far more important.
When are more people going to agree with me that the TSA, and the NSA, and a whole bunch of federal agencies need to go away?
IMO, the people who continue to accept this BS are the real wackos.
Considering so many of holders people “work” at Thousands Standing Around.......... they have a different concept of common sense.
Duuuuhhhh. Well, dey said dat if I saw a gun, I had to stop duh person what was carrying it and dat’s what I did.
Vanessa’s problem is thinking that any common sense would be used. I’m glad that she got her bubble burst. The more americans are mistreated by the fatassed hamburger munchers the sooner we get rid of the make work losers of TSA.
I bet if she were wearing a burka, with a picture of Bin Laden on it she wouldn’t have been targeted by the TSA
Look closely at it (which would take a a SANE person about 15 seconds prior to realizing it is not a gun, not a ‘replica’ and not a threat)? Yes. Okay.
Accuse her of committing a federal crime, detain her until she misses her flight and defend your actions by claiming the purse is a ‘replica weapon’? No.
Like I said, those people are f—ked in the head.
How long should it take for them to figure out it’s not a real gun?
Yes, they can look at it, but how long does it take the TSA to decide it is a harmless design? The teenager missed her flight because of the TSA bumbling agents.
The thing looks tacky but is clearly not a working firearm.
Vanessa’s lesson fro the day: Common sense, isn’t.
God forbid she pointed that thing at anyone! ALWAYS treat a purse like it’s loaded!
I dont think it is crazy for the TSA to at least look closely at it.
I knew a jeweler who made a working .22 caliber derringer from gold and wore it as a belt buckle when he went on airplanes. This was pre-9/11. The barrel was thick and he said hed fired it. It didnt trigger metal detectors. (Oh, did I mention he was totally nuts?)
Bad fashion taste is now a crime?
Where was SWAT? She needed to be tased for this and then beaten to pulp, subject to a strip search, and indefinite incarceration.
Around 91 was flying with my kid from LA and the morons in security (not TSA at the time) made us trash his souvenir from Disneyland one of those “Pirate” pistols that has an orange cap on the end. Like I was going to hijack the plane with flintlock pistol.....
Too Stupid for Arby’s
They continue to prove themselve to be utter sacks of crap in Blue bags.
Apparently working for the TSA means checking your brain at the door.
Or it could be that the TSA is dumb as rocks, (no offense to rocks intended).
The Stasi jackboots made my sister toss a snow globe she had just bought at the airport gift store. Now, apparently, from photos I saw, they have new signs specifically saying no snow globes.
From the picture, it looks like it could be one of those .22 belt buckle pistols.
When you drop the NSA from your list.
They aren’t interested in you sex life and don’t have time and staff to listen.
They have a real job in assessing real threats.
The point was not that it looked like a gun, IMHO. It was because someone that uses a gun design on a purse is probably conservative, more likely to be someone who values their freedoms, and so they were harassed for their political beliefs. No one in their right mind would think this is dangerous, so it leaves the whole situation open to discovering the ulterior motives of the TSA personnel.
If she had an Obama sticker on, she would not even have been searched.
Hey, dummies. A cartoon of a gun is not the same as a gun.
But she's the pregnant one!
They're supposed to shoot her dog, too.
A real story —
I attended the IDPA Nationals in Lake Cormorant MS. After the awards on Sunday the mad dash for the Memphis Airport was on.
Among a group of twenty or so participants at least 5 of them had award plaques they carried with them on their carry ons.
On each of the plaques was a small (1.5”) silhouette of a handgun.
I sh*t you not - TSA began to peel off the backing on the plaques and stood around for twenty minutes deciding if these dangerous objects would be permitted on a plane. Finally someone in authority came by and gave the OK. By then a sizable crowd of us had gathered and watched in total disbelief.
This was one of the more stupefying acts of official government ineptness and feckless blunder to which I have ever been a witness.
At least for the most part these windup imbeciles remain enclosed in airports. That way we can avoid them.
Should sue for violation of freedom of speech.
(Clothing designs and accessories are “speech”.)
She has more sense than the “agents”
I remember the good old days. My brother and I, unaccompanied minors, took our .22 rifles on the plane as carry-on. The stewardess asked if they were unloaded. Yep, the cartridges were in the case zipper pocket, LOL.
They do look fake, except for cylinder.
What does the Transportation [IN]Security Adminstration look for when hiring? People who have 0 common sense and can't even spell "Logic?"
Well, it applied with regards of Dear Leader's choice to head the DHS: Janet "CLUELESS" In-Competano has to be one of the DUMBEST, IDIOTS in the entire country.
Scary ain't it???
I’m sure TSA would try to pull the trigger. :p
“TSA agents are almost stupid enough to be congressmen! Almost!”
Glad you added the almost...’cuz a congress critter is the baseline from which all intelligence is measured.
After an ageless moon rock comes our elected officials, mac daddy ( five steps below elected officials) ad then 10 steps below mac daddy comes TSA agents.
Since Posse Comitatus was just killed, they could send in the Marines on her too.
gold only became a metal post 9/11? who knew?
When Zero Tolerance and Zero Intelligence got together and had had a child, they named it TSA.