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Sky Harbor security catches woman with loaded gun

PHOENIX — Security officers at Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport found a loaded gun Friday inside a 44-year-old woman’s carry-on bag.

The gun was discovered around 6 p.m. at a checkpoint inside Terminal 4.

Ross Feinstein, a spokesman for the Transportation Security Administration, said while the woman likely wasn’t planning to use the Beretta 9mm Nano on the plane, she’ll still get hit in the pocketbook.

“TSA will still impose a civil penalty of around $3,000, since it was a loaded firearm inside her carry-on bag,” Feinstein said.

He said the woman was scheduled to fly to Denver, and was one of eight passengers across the nation to caught with a gun inside carry-on luggage Friday. The woman was not arrested, but law enforcement did confiscate her weapon.

“The vast majority of passengers we catch every day at 450 checkpoints nationwide say, ‘I just forgot it was in my carry-on bag.’ So it’s really important to check and make sure no prohibited items are in your carry-on bag,” he said.

Feinstein said you can travel with a gun, but you need to check it in and make sure your airline knows it’s in your luggage.

For carrying an unloaded firearm in your carry-on luggage, fines range from $1,500 for a first offense to $3,000 for getting caught with a gun that is loaded.