Record number of guns seized at Detroit Metro Airport in 2022

By: - February 21, 2023 1:17 pm

Detroit Metro Airport | Susan J. Demas

A record number of guns were intercepted at Detroit Metropolitan Airport in 2022.

Transportation Security Administration (TSA) officers seized 100 handguns at security checkpoints, more than twice the number in 2019.

About 88% of the guns were loaded.

“Bringing a firearm to the checkpoint is an expensive, dangerous mistake that far too many people are making,” Michigan TSA Federal Security Director Steve Lorincz said in a statement. “Our TSA officers are doing a fantastic job preventing weapons from making their way onboard aircraft, but the responsibility falls to passengers to pack smart and keep prohibited items out of their baggage.”

The increase in seizures is part of an alarming national trend. TSA officers intercepted 6,542 guns at checkpoints across the country — or roughly 18 per day.

The number of guns seized nationwide has increased every year since 2008, with the exception of 2021, when fewer people were traveling because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport led the nation in guns seizures, with 448, followed by Dallas/Forth Worth International Airport, with 385, and Houston’s George Bush Intercontinental Airport, with 298.

Last year, the TSA raised the maximum fine for carrying a gun at airport checkpoints to nearly $14,950. Passengers also lose their PreCheck status for five years.

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Steve Neavling
Steve Neavling

Steve Neavling is an award-winning investigative journalist with the Detroit Metro Times. He operated Motor City Muckraker, an online news site devoted to exposing abuses of power and holding public officials accountable. Neavling also hosted Muckraker Report on 910AM from September 2017 to July 2018. Before launching Motor City Muckraker, Neavling was a five-year veteran of the Detroit Free Press, covering Detroit’s city hall.