A 51-year-old pilot of a Southwest Airlines was arrested at St. Louis Lambert International Airport Wednesday morning for packing a loaded weapon.
The pilot, whose name has not been declared, was arrested at a TSA checkpoint about 5 a.m., according to reports.
A TSA Mark Howell spokesperson confirmed that Transportation Security Administration officers discovered found a loaded Smith & Wesson M&P Shield 9mm pistol in his carry-on bag.
Howell also said that when he found the pistol in the Southwest employee’s carry-on bag, the pistol was loaded with seven rounds of ammunition. TSA said it alerted local law enforcement who seized the handgun and arrested the man.
TSA Spokesperson Mark Howell said the handgun was loaded with seven rounds of ammunition when it was discovered in the Southwest employee’s carry-on bag. The TSA said it alerted local law enforcement who confiscated the gun and detained the man.
The flight was scheduled to leave St. Louise at 5:15 a.m. left about 45 minutes late, According to online flight records.
Southwest Airlines stated, “We are aware of a situation involving a Southwest Pilot at St. Louis Airport. We are currently working alongside the appropriate authorities to gather more information. We have no further information to share at this time.”
According to TSA Spokesperson, the man could face criminal charges or civil pantalets.
An airport spokesperson, Jeff Lea, said that the pilot did not have the authorization to carry a weapon in bags.