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Thread: Sky Harbor Airport: Random Vehicle Searches???

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    Regular Member The Trickster's Avatar
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    Sky Harbor Airport: Random Vehicle Searches???

    I had to drop off my wife at Sky Harbor today and while there, I noticed signs stating that random vehicle searches may be conducted. Did I miss something, or is the Fourth Amendment still on the books? Has anyone ever heard of any of these searches actually taking place? If so, details please.

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    It has been reported that TSA Officers at airports are now searching cars. The news started to spread after a story ran this week stating that a woman found a notice informing her that her car had been searched by TSA.

    The short version: While we deploy numerous layers of security, TSA officers are not inspecting cars or mandating that they be searched. ¶ In this case, it turns out the car was searched by an employee of a car parking service. ¶ Each airport authority, along with its state and local law enforcement partners, is responsible for securing airport property, including the outer perimeter. At this particular airport, car searches are part of their “airport security plan.”

    An airport security plan addresses a myriad of security requirements that each airport must adhere to in order to protect the traveling public, which includes the physical security of the airport property. While the airport security plan is approved by the TSA, it is up to each airport authority and its state and local law enforcement partners to follow the plan that has been implemented.
    http://blog.tsa.gov/2013/07/false-re...-searches.html

    "We didn't do it! Our clients did it."

    On the application of the Fourth Amendment, see http://fourthamendment.com/
    Last edited by Nightmare; 05-19-2014 at 07:30 AM.
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    Regular Member solus's Avatar
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    thanks for the insight, and i believe the term 'searched' might be inappropriately used and rather the parking attendant is looking through the windows to ensure there are no valuable(s) left out and visible. if they are seen i am sure the attendant will break in and secure them for the vehicle's owner. (last sentence is definitely sarcasm)

    btw, how does this differ from LE driving through parking lot(s) running the license plates of the vehicles parked there?

    ipse
    Last edited by solus; 05-19-2014 at 10:54 AM.
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    Regular Member FreeInAZ's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Trickster View Post
    I had to drop off my wife at Sky Harbor today and while there, I noticed signs stating that random vehicle searches may be conducted. Did I miss something, or is the Fourth Amendment still on the books? Has anyone ever heard of any of these searches actually taking place? If so, details please.
    Wow! Things change quickly! I was at Terminal #4 dropping off a person on Friday, May 16th & no signs were visible at that time (that I noticed). Maybe some stoned teenager called in a "Threat" ->
    "I will draw mustaches on all TSA agents with PERMANENT marker!" Dun..dun..dunnnnn! So they are inspecting for sharpies/paint pens/crayons etc..?

    In today's USA, anything seems to fly (pun intended), when one tosses out the catch phrase of: "in the interest of security...."
    Last edited by FreeInAZ; 05-19-2014 at 05:36 PM.
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    Regular Member The Trickster's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FreeInAZ View Post
    Wow! Things change quickly! I was at Terminal #4 dropping off a person on Friday, May 16th & no signs were visible at that time (that I noticed). Maybe some stoned teenager called in a "Threat" ->
    "I will draw mustaches on all TSA agents with PERMANENT marker!" Dun..dun..dunnnnn! So they are inspecting for sharpies/paint pens/crayons etc..?

    In today's USA, anything seems to fly (pun intended), when one tosses out the catch phrase of: "in the interest of security...."
    They were posted near the mobile radar station just before you get to Terminal 4 parking on both sides of the road. I was taken aback by them, though if they were conducting a "checkpoint," I would still have refused to consent to any and all searches.

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    Regular Member The Trickster's Avatar
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    Has anyone openly carried at Sky Harbor? Even though I was CC, I kept my eyes open for signs but didn't see any. I could imagine a whole lot of hoopla over nothing at a place like that if "just a civilian" was to OC there.

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    Regular Member FreeInAZ's Avatar
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    Thumbs up

    Quote Originally Posted by The Trickster View Post
    Has anyone openly carried at Sky Harbor? Even though I was CC, I kept my eyes open for signs but didn't see any. I could imagine a whole lot of hoopla over nothing at a place like that if "just a civilian" was to OC there.
    I've OC'd nearly every time I've been to the airport to pickup people. I carried outside the terminal and briefly in the non secure areas with no issues. Done so at least three times over the last couple of years. The times I went discreet carry was simply to keep those being picked up from worrying about things unduly (In-laws or relatives from IL).
    Last edited by FreeInAZ; 05-19-2014 at 09:04 PM. Reason: clarity
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    Open carry is fine at Sky Harbor. One sees people with pistols there occasionally, long guns much less frequently.

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    Regular Member Rusty Young Man's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Trickster View Post
    Has anyone openly carried at Sky Harbor? Even though I was CC, I kept my eyes open for signs but didn't see any. I could imagine a whole lot of hoopla over nothing at a place like that if "just a civilian" was to OC there.
    I am an OCer, but I've never OCed at Sky Harbor, in "secure" or non-secure areas. I was under the impression that the airport was off-limits for us Law-Abiding carriers (but obviously not for the criminals who wish to do harm there)? Regardless, I have not seen any gunbuster signs there to speak of.

    Quote Originally Posted by FreeInAZ View Post
    I've OC'd nearly every time I've been to the airport to pickup people. I carried outside the terminal and briefly in the non secure areas with no issues. Done so at least three times over the last couple of years. The times I went discreet carry was simply to keep those being picked up from worrying about things unduly (In-laws or relatives from IL).
    You've carried INSIDE the terminals (where the airlines have their desks and all), such as Terminal 2, 3 and/or 4? No hassle from opinion-enforcement officers?

    I ask because every time I come in from Tucson, the shuttle drop-off is at Sky Harbor, and I've always done the full disarm route to err on the safe side: sidearm in locked in a hard case with the empty magazines, ammunition in a fiber container (the individual cardboard box the ammo comes in), and everything locked in luggage.
    This is from their guidelines for airline TRAVEL, but I didn't want to find out about OC at Sky Harbor the hard way.
    http://www.tsa.gov/traveler-informat...and-ammunition
    Last edited by Rusty Young Man; 05-19-2014 at 11:28 PM.
    I carry to defend my loved ones; Desensitizing and educating are secondary & tertiary reasons. Anything else is unintended.

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    In my experience and other reports, pistols in the terminal will not create issues. Long guns are more likely to produce inquiries by LEOs.

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    Regular Member FreeInAZ's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PeterNSteinmetz View Post
    In my experience and other reports, pistols in the terminal will not create issues. Long guns are more likely to produce inquiries by LEOs.
    Here's one anti-2A bloggers fit over guns being allowed in Sky Harbor. I lost 20 IQ points reading it. Good thing I had a few extra few to spare.

    http://www.dailykos.com/story/2013/1...ay-in-the-USA#
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    Regular Member Rusty Young Man's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FreeInAZ View Post
    Here's one anti-2A bloggers fit over guns being allowed in Sky Harbor. I lost 20 IQ points reading it. Good thing I had a few extra few to spare.

    http://www.dailykos.com/story/2013/1...ay-in-the-USA#
    I need all the IQ points and brain cells I have to finish up my last year and get out of the money scam that is "higher education institutions".

    I got this far:
    Quote Originally Posted by Article
    Authorities said that no laws were broken because Americans have the right to carry guns in unsecured areas of the airport.
    All I needed to hear. Thanks for the info FreeInAZ. :thumbsup:
    I carry to defend my loved ones; Desensitizing and educating are secondary & tertiary reasons. Anything else is unintended.

    “Life, liberty, and property do not exist because men have made laws. On the contrary, it was the fact that life, liberty, and property existed beforehand that caused men to make laws in the first place.” - Frederic Bastiat

    "When bad men combine, the good must associate; else they will fall one by one, an unpitied sacrifice in a contemptible struggle." - Edmund Burke

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    Regular Member Rusty Young Man's Avatar
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    The searches seem to have stemmed from a "necessity" for increases security (“Necessity is the plea for every infringement of human freedom. It is the argument of tyrants; it is the creed of slaves.” - William Pitt). Any excuse is valid when it comes to overreach.

    From the East Valley Tribune (http://www.eastvalleytribune.com/new....html?mode=jqm or http://www.eastvalleytribune.com/new...l?TNNoMobile):
    Quote Originally Posted by East Valley Tribune
    Sky Harbor begins random car searches

    Posted: Monday, July 2, 2007 11:37 am | Updated: 7:31 pm, Fri Oct 7, 2011.
    Donna Hogan

    Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport began random car inspections on airport roadways today in response to a request by the Transportation Security Administration, Homeland Security’s airport watchdog organization.
    The request was prompted by car bombings and attempted bombings at airports in the United Kingdom during the weekend.
    The TSA did not raise the color-coded alert system, which remains at orange.
    All airport entrances will be subject to the inspections, and airport officials suggest motorists slow down while entering the airport but only pull over if directed to do so by an officer.
    Last edited by Rusty Young Man; 05-20-2014 at 01:31 AM.
    I carry to defend my loved ones; Desensitizing and educating are secondary & tertiary reasons. Anything else is unintended.

    “Life, liberty, and property do not exist because men have made laws. On the contrary, it was the fact that life, liberty, and property existed beforehand that caused men to make laws in the first place.” - Frederic Bastiat

    "When bad men combine, the good must associate; else they will fall one by one, an unpitied sacrifice in a contemptible struggle." - Edmund Burke

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    Regular Member The Trickster's Avatar
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    You weren't kidding; that "article" hurt my brain. It's always the same piffle from these types: there's going to be a shootout just like at the OK Corral, this is the Wild West, there will be blood in the streets, blah, blah, blah. In the end, nothing remotely similar to their predictions ever actually occurs.

    Being at the airport is something I seldom ever do; however, the TSA's approach of disarming everyone of every possible thing that could possibly somehow be used as a weapon got me thinking that perhaps it'd be wise for me to invest in some martial arts training. They can prevent you from having your firearm, knife, etc., but the one thing that can't be removed under the guise of everyone's safety are my limbs and my brain's ability to use them in hand-to-hand combat. I'll never be one of those hubristic guys who thinks a few years of martial arts training will somehow enable me to bob and weave out of the path of a bullet, but if one is disarmed and a self-defense situation arises, I could see it paying off. Thoughts?

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    Regular Member Rusty Young Man's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Trickster View Post
    You weren't kidding; that "article" hurt my brain. It's always the same piffle from these types: there's going to be a shootout just like at the OK Corral, this is the Wild West, there will be blood in the streets, blah, blah, blah. In the end, nothing remotely similar to their predictions ever actually occurs.

    Being at the airport is something I seldom ever do; however, the TSA's approach of disarming everyone of every possible thing that could possibly somehow be used as a weapon got me thinking that perhaps it'd be wise for me to invest in some martial arts training. They can prevent you from having your firearm, knife, etc., but the one thing that can't be removed under the guise of everyone's safety are my limbs and my brain's ability to use them in hand-to-hand combat. I'll never be one of those hubristic guys who thinks a few years of martial arts training will somehow enable me to bob and weave out of the path of a bullet, but if one is disarmed and a self-defense situation arises, I could see it paying off. Thoughts?
    "My firearm is nothing more than a tool. It is an extension of myself..." - Rusty Young Man during an interview by a local "news" channel, December 2013.

    If you can do something to make yourself look, and BE, less of an easy target for the two-legged predators among us, go for it. Retention of your firearm, hand-to-hand defense, etc. is all valuable, IMO.
    Besides, you may even live a few more years from all the exercise.
    Last edited by Rusty Young Man; 05-20-2014 at 01:58 AM.
    I carry to defend my loved ones; Desensitizing and educating are secondary & tertiary reasons. Anything else is unintended.

    “Life, liberty, and property do not exist because men have made laws. On the contrary, it was the fact that life, liberty, and property existed beforehand that caused men to make laws in the first place.” - Frederic Bastiat

    "When bad men combine, the good must associate; else they will fall one by one, an unpitied sacrifice in a contemptible struggle." - Edmund Burke

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    Regular Member FreeInAZ's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rusty Young Man View Post
    "My firearm is nothing more than a tool. It is an extension of myself..." - Rusty Young Man during an interview by a local "news" channel, December 2013.

    If you can do something to make yourself look, and BE, less of an easy target for the two-legged predators among us, go for it. Retention of your firearm, hand-to-hand defense, etc. is all valuable, IMO.
    Besides, you may even live a few more years from all the exercise.
    THAT^^^

    Spot on Rusty.
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    Regular Member Kopis's Avatar
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    I was just about to put up a post in general and TN about this same thing. I flew out of memphis last week on a business trip. As i approached the airport there were big signs on each side that said something like ALL VEHICLES SUBJECT TO SEARCH or something like that. The lanes were coned down to one and there were about a dozen airport/TSA cops with an area for directing vehicles in to and seats where people were sitting as their vehicles were being searched.

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    Regular Member The Trickster's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kopis View Post
    I was just about to put up a post in general and TN about this same thing. I flew out of memphis last week on a business trip. As i approached the airport there were big signs on each side that said something like ALL VEHICLES SUBJECT TO SEARCH or something like that. The lanes were coned down to one and there were about a dozen airport/TSA cops with an area for directing vehicles in to and seats where people were sitting as their vehicles were being searched.
    Thanks for sharing. I would like to know by what authority these searches are being conducted and the 4th Amendment ignored? Unfortunately, searching the net for incidents has yielded little to no results. I wonder, are they asking to search or just doing it with or without consent? What makes airports so special to become Constitution-free zones?

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    Regular Member The Trickster's Avatar
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    I decided to contact Sky Harbor and inquire about these random vehicle searches:

    "To whom it may concern,

    While at your airport this past week, I noticed several signs stating that all vehicles are subject to search. I was rather taken aback by this observation, as I'm fairly certain that Sky Harbor is public property and the Fourth Amendment of our Constitution allows us to travel freely on public property without being subjected to arbitrary searches. I'd imagine that these proclaimed searches are conducted by roadblocks or "checkpoints" as they are frequently called for better PR. I am curious, by what/whose authority am I subjected to be detained and randomly searched, therefore violating my right via the Fourth Amendment? Please note that I am *not* referring to the TSA security checkpoints located at the entrances to the secured terminals; rather, just the vehicle searches in non-secured areas.

    Thank you."

    I'm sure by asking questions and not just complying like a good little pismire, I'll have my name added to some list of possible terrorists or something to that effect. After all, these days we are all guilty until we prove our very own innocence.

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    I received the following reply from Sky Harbor:

    "Thank you for contacting Phoenix Sky Harbor regarding your question on security and vehicle searches.

    The Department of Homeland Security/Transportation Security Administration requires that commercial airports conduct vehicle inspections during times of heightened security threat levels. The signs along the airport roadways are intended to give drivers advance notice that their vehicles could be inspected when threat levels are heightened per federal law. These roadway signs are posted in locations to allow the public to turn around if they do not want to be subject to search. All vehicle searches are conducted in accordance with the law.

    If we can be of assistance in any other matter, Joe, please contact us. Thank you.

    Customer Service Team
    Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport"

    Um....yeah. "I don't consent to any searches or seizures; am I free to go or am I being detained?"

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    Regular Member FreeInAZ's Avatar
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    This is double speak! The signs needed to say then per the response: If you continue past this point - you agree to be searched. They also need to cite the law they are referring to. I am sure it is in place, and this only goes to show how much we are starting to resemble a banana republic.
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    Regular Member The Trickster's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FreeInAZ View Post
    This is double speak! The signs needed to say then per the response: If you continue past this point - you agree to be searched. They also need to cite the law they are referring to. I am sure it is in place, and this only goes to show how much we are starting to resemble a banana republic.
    I love how they think they can adopt a policy, hang up a couple signs, and then the 4th Amendment becomes null and void. Even at the DUI and Border Patrol roadblocks, they still need PC to conduct a search without consent; Sky Harbor isn't some special place just because the TSA/DHS say so.

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    Not just a policy...

    Quote Originally Posted by The Trickster View Post
    I love how they think they can adopt a policy, hang up a couple signs, and then the 4th Amendment becomes null and void. Even at the DUI and Border Patrol roadblocks, they still need PC to conduct a search without consent; Sky Harbor isn't some special place just because the TSA/DHS say so.
    This is part of the Patriot Act; it's incorporated into the way the airport security is run under the CFR for transportation. Specifically, 49CFR sections 1542.301 and 303. AND, the Airport Security Plans and Directives are classified SSI (Sensitive Security Information), so you're not allowed to see the authority under which they search your vehicle. The REAL question is what happens when you refuse the search and demand to turn around and leave.

    [url]http://www.ecfr.gov/cgi-bin/text-idx?c=ecfr;sid=bea8e3d217db2cf2a562c85911cc3f7f;rg n=div5;view=text;node=49%3A9.1.3.5.10;idno=49;cc=e cfr#49:9.1.3.5.10.4.10.2

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    Regular Member FreeInAZ's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by johnfenter View Post
    This is part of the Patriot Act; it's incorporated into the way the airport security is run under the CFR for transportation. Specifically, 49CFR sections 1542.301 and 303. AND, the Airport Security Plans and Directives are classified SSI (Sensitive Security Information), so you're not allowed to see the authority under which they search your vehicle. The REAL question is what happens when you refuse the search and demand to turn around and leave.

    [url]http://www.ecfr.gov/cgi-bin/text-idx?c=ecfr;sid=bea8e3d217db2cf2a562c85911cc3f7f;rg n=div5;view=text;node=49%3A9.1.3.5.10;idno=49;cc=e cfr#49:9.1.3.5.10.4.10.2
    Sadly and probably, the same thing that happens during bogus BP check points 150 miles in country from the boarder. They rip you out of the vehicle, beat you up, arrest you, and tear it apart for defying their "authority".

    Sad state of affairs these days...
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    Regular Member The Trickster's Avatar
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    I simply do not understand why these agencies believe they can circumvent the Constitution, in this case the 4th Amendment, by coming up with lesser laws that clearly contradict the supreme law of our country. Roadblocks/searches without suspicion of individualized criminal activity, "free speech zones," etc.; government needs to stop such cherry-picking nonsense and do what it expects from us: actually follow the law.

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