Sock monkey's 2-inch gun confiscated by TSA agent

Dec. 10, 2013 at 4:59 PM
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ST. LOUIS, Dec. 10 (UPI) -- A Washington state woman said a 2-inch-long toy gun for a cowboy-themed sock monkey was seized by Transportation Security Administration agents in Missouri.

Phyllis May of Redmond said she and her husband were preparing to fly from St. Louis to the Seattle-Tacoma International Airport when one of her bags was pulled aside by a TSA agent, KING-TV, Seattle, reported Tuesday.

May, who has a business selling sock monkey dolls, said the agent took issue with a small replica pistol belonging to "Rooster Monkburn," a cowboy-themed sock monkey named in tribute to the character from "True Grit."

"She said 'this is a gun,'" May said. "I said no, it's not a gun it's a prop for my monkey."

"She said 'If I held it up to your neck, you wouldn't know if it was real or not,' and I said 'really?'" May said.

May said she was eventually allowed to board the plane with the rest of the items in her bag, mostly sewing supplies.

"Rooster Monkburn has been disarmed so I'm sure everyone on the plane was safe," she said. "I understand she was doing her job but at some point doesn't common sense prevail?"

The TSA issued a statement Monday.

"TSA officers are dedicated to keeping the nation's transportation security systems safe and secure for the traveling public. Under longstanding aircraft security policy, and out of an abundance of caution, realistic replicas of firearms are prohibited in carry-on bags," the statement read.

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