TSA: Co-pilot at Albany Int'l Airport found with loaded gun in carry-on luggage

April 17, 2017 06:26 PM

COLONIE -- TSA officers say a .380-caliber handgun was loaded with six bullets and that they found it in a pilot's carry-on bag.

TSA officers were screening carry-on items, and authorities say someone at the X-ray machine spotted it.

We're told the man was a co-pilot on a Southwest flight bound for Chicago-Midway Airport.

Passengers at the airport said they're happy the gun was detected, but they were surprised at the news.

"Well, I just heard it from you," said Virginia Moser of Middlebury, VT.  "And I was shocked.  But I'm glad that the gun was recovered. And I'm awfully surprised that a pilot would do that."

"It makes you wonder, though, doesn't he know the rules, the laws?" said Liz Holub of Saratoga Springs.  "But it's very good that TSA is up on checking everyone, not just passengers."

The agency tells us that officers in Albany caught two guns during all of last year.  But this year, this is the second gun that TSA officers have discovered within the last four weeks.

They found a loaded .45-caliber handgun and 14 bullets at the end of last month, when they say they stopped a man with a handgun trying to get through the security checkpoint.

The TSA says this recent incident highlights the importance of what the agency does every day.

"Well, I think that was a very good job, but that is, of course, what we go through all this for. I'm glad that it works," said Moser.

"I know they've been criticized lately but something like this just sets the record straight that it's needed. And that they do a good job," said Holub.  

Firearms and ammunition are not allowed in carry-on bags.  They can go in checked baggage, if packed according to guidelines.

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