On its face, a bejeweled pink lipstick case that looked like something that would pair well with anything Barbie looked harmless enough. To alert Transportation Security Administration agents, it looked like a threat.
As a female passenger’s carry-on luggage passed through an X-ray machine at a Detroit Metropolitan Airport security checkpoint over the weekend, the TSA agents recognized the bling as a stun gun and contacted Wayne County Airport Police, the Detroit Free Press reports.
TSA spokesman Jim McKinney told the newspaper that self-defense items like the womans stun gun “may not escalate to the level of you missing your flight.”
The weapon was confiscated and the passenger was cited on a local charge, but was allowed to board her flight to Fort Lauderdale. She had to leave the stun gun – a personal protection device easily available online at such sites as womenonguard.com – behind.
McKinney said it’s not uncommon for passengers to pack self-defense weapons and forget about them until they’re detected by security. He advised travelers to carefully check their baggage before leaving for the airport.
“We’ve had people travel and not realize they have a sword cane in their luggage,” he told the newspaper. “You can’t take it with you, but you won’t get arrested for it like a loaded gun.”If you’re confused about what’s allowed on flights and what’s not, go to the TSA homepage.