HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) – Transportation Security Administration (TSA) officers at Harrisburg International Airport prevented a York County man from bringing a loaded handgun onto his flight Monday.

A TSA spokesperson says the 9mm gun was loaded with seven bullets when an X-ray unit alerted officers at the security checkpoint.

The man, a Dillsburg resident, was issued a summons and faces a maximum penalty of $15,000.

“The TSA officers in Harrisburg perform their jobs well with a focus on our mission,” said Karen Keys-Turner, TSA’s Federal Security Director for the airport. “I hope this serves as a reminder to others not to make this same mistake. Travelers should not bring their guns to an airport security checkpoint. We are happy to make sure that firearms travel with their owners as long as the guns are packed properly. That begins with ensuring that they are unloaded. Any time dangerous items such as loaded guns are brought to a security checkpoint, it represents a serious safety concern.”

Passengers are only permitted to travel with firearms in checked baggage.  Firearms must be unloaded then packed in a hard-sided locked case.  The locked case should be taken to the airline check-in counter to be declared. TSA has details on how to properly travel with a firearm posted on its website.

This is the first gun found at Harrisburg International Airport in 2023 after 10 were found last year. Last year, 6,542 firearms were caught at 262 out of 430 airport security checkpoints nationwide.