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Thread: Memphis airport police/tsa randomly searching vehicles

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    Regular Member Kopis's Avatar
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    Memphis airport police/tsa randomly searching vehicles

    I put this up in the TN forum as well but hoped to get some more expert advice here. Anyway, 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. I was in my company car which i would neeeeeever have a firearm in because that is against policy but i had cleaned it out before my trip since i was parking it at the garage. I had removed my emergency bag which has an ax, knife, pliars, food, water, flares in it though. I was curious about both the legality of the search to begin with and secondly what if i had a firearm on my person or in my car? I often leave an AR pistol in a case with 6 mags in my trunk with my emergency bag. What kind of issues would that cause?

    Also, when flying back out of FL, they swabbed my hands. When i asked what for, he said it tests for explosives and ammunition. I asked what if i had been to the shooting range earlier or just had my hand on my carry weapon and some residue was still on my hands? He didnt have an answer and seemed concerned with my questions but the machine came back negative so he let me go.

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    Regular Member DocWalker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kopis View Post
    I put this up in the TN forum as well but hoped to get some more expert advice here. Anyway, 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. I was in my company car which i would neeeeeever have a firearm in because that is against policy but i had cleaned it out before my trip since i was parking it at the garage. I had removed my emergency bag which has an ax, knife, pliars, food, water, flares in it though. I was curious about both the legality of the search to begin with and secondly what if i had a firearm on my person or in my car? I often leave an AR pistol in a case with 6 mags in my trunk with my emergency bag. What kind of issues would that cause?

    Also, when flying back out of FL, they swabbed my hands. When i asked what for, he said it tests for explosives and ammunition. I asked what if i had been to the shooting range earlier or just had my hand on my carry weapon and some residue was still on my hands? He didnt have an answer and seemed concerned with my questions but the machine came back negative so he let me go.
    If it is a private airport then they have the right, if it is a public airport then they are using the US Constitution as a rag to wipe their boots on. They will only do this as long as the sheeple go along with it. Once it is a normal way of doing things it will be harder to make them stop.

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    Regular Member sudden valley gunner's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kopis View Post
    I put this up in the TN forum as well but hoped to get some more expert advice here. Anyway, 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. I was in my company car which i would neeeeeever have a firearm in because that is against policy but i had cleaned it out before my trip since i was parking it at the garage. I had removed my emergency bag which has an ax, knife, pliars, food, water, flares in it though. I was curious about both the legality of the search to begin with and secondly what if i had a firearm on my person or in my car? I often leave an AR pistol in a case with 6 mags in my trunk with my emergency bag. What kind of issues would that cause?

    Also, when flying back out of FL, they swabbed my hands. When i asked what for, he said it tests for explosives and ammunition. I asked what if i had been to the shooting range earlier or just had my hand on my carry weapon and some residue was still on my hands? He didnt have an answer and seemed concerned with my questions but the machine came back negative so he let me go.

    LOL had a similar incident, got swabbed and I asked them if I was shooting that morning if it would show he said yes, I then asked "then what" his reply "I don't know".
    I am not anti Cop I am just pro Citizen.

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    Quote Originally Posted by DocWalker View Post
    If it is a private airport then they have the right, if it is a public airport then they are using the US Constitution as a rag to wipe their boots on. They will only do this as long as the sheeple go along with it. Once it is a normal way of doing things it will be harder to make them stop.
    Its not the private company performing the search ... according to what the OP noted...the guberment is .. so I think that this point is moot.

    Just because they put signs up saying whatever does not mean that its a no-4th amendment area.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kopis View Post
    Also, when flying back out of FL, they swabbed my hands. When i asked what for, he said it tests for explosives and ammunition. I asked what if i had been to the shooting range earlier or just had my hand on my carry weapon and some residue was still on my hands? He didnt have an answer and seemed concerned with my questions but the machine came back negative so he let me go.
    I go to the range quite a bit, even if only eating up one or two mags. I also clean at least one weapon a day. I would "pop positive" every time I was swabbed, if I let them do that. I think I have ORM-D tatooed on my butt. This is why I do not use commercial flights.
    "Firearms stand next in importance to the Constitution itself. They are the people's liberty teeth (and) keystone... the rifle and the pistol are equally indispensable... more than 99% of them by their silence indicate that they are in safe and sane hands. The very atmosphere of firearms everywhere restrains evil interference .When firearms go, all goes, we need them every hour." -- George Washington

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    Quote Originally Posted by davidmcbeth View Post
    Its not the private company performing the search ... according to what the OP noted...the guberment is .. so I think that this point is moot.

    Just because they put signs up saying whatever does not mean that its a no-4th amendment area.
    This. Got a warrant? No? Got a warrant exception? No? Then they are, under color of law, depriving you of your right to be free from unreasonable searches and seizures.

    In order to be searched you first have to be seized. Don't consent to either. They can't search somebody walking or driving away from them.

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    Regular Member Kopis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Yard Sale View Post
    This. Got a warrant? No? Got a warrant exception? No? Then they are, under color of law, depriving you of your right to be free from unreasonable searches and seizures.

    In order to be searched you first have to be seized. Don't consent to either. They can't search somebody walking or driving away from them.
    It's a one way road in, you arent able to drive away without driving toward the airport. No one has answer my question of is it legal to have a loaded firearm on your person while driving through the airport to pick someone up?

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    Campaign Veteran since9's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DocWalker View Post
    If it is a private airport then they have the right, if it is a public airport then they are using the US Constitution as a rag to wipe their boots on. They will only do this as long as the sheeple go along with it. Once it is a normal way of doing things it will be harder to make them stop.
    Memphis isn't a "private airport." Even if it were privately owned, operated, or both, if they're open to serving the public at large, the same protections which apply to private businesses do not apply to public services which are privately-owned or run. A city Utilities, for example, cannot refuse business to an individual even if their cause falls outside the bounds of traditional anti-discrimination law.

    In other words, you do not forfeit your Constitutional rights in the parking lot of KMEM a.k.a. Memphis International Airport.
    Last edited by since9; 05-24-2014 at 07:47 AM.
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    Regular Member Super6O's Avatar
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    I am only 24 and i remember walking to the gates and waving as my dad's flight pushed back. Sad thing is the airport is no more safe than back then!



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    I have often wondered about this. A few years ago when I was leaving my Dads in CA I was flying out of LAX. LAPD just happened to have a mass vehicle seach of all vehicles coming in, basically having them open the trunk or whatever. When my Dad asked if they had a warrant the LEO smirked and said no but if you don't let us check we won't let you in. Even when I knew less about my rights back then it still all seemed kinda messed up. Any way my dad let him look in the back of our SUV so I wouldn't miss my flight out of that communist state. We had a few ammo cans in the back but the LEO didnt say anything about them.

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    Regular Member DaveT319's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kopis View Post
    It's a one way road in, you arent able to drive away without driving toward the airport. No one has answer my question of is it legal to have a loaded firearm on your person while driving through the airport to pick someone up?
    Yes, it is legal. If you are a valid CHL holder, you can even enter most airport terminals while carrying. You simply (obviously) can't go beyond the checkpoint with a weapon. So certainly the road in and the parking lots are ok, and any weapon found during a search (which doesn't seem legal on the face of it) would not constitute a crime.

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    Regular Member Kopis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DaveT319 View Post
    Yes, it is legal. If you are a valid CHL holder, you can even enter most airport terminals while carrying. You simply (obviously) can't go beyond the checkpoint with a weapon. So certainly the road in and the parking lots are ok, and any weapon found during a search (which doesn't seem legal on the face of it) would not constitute a crime.
    wel, the sliding glass entry doors are posted with no weapons signs so i am fully aware i cannot carry past that. I was wondering about driving there (usually leave an AR in the trunk) and having my glock on my person.

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    Regular Member DaveT319's Avatar
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    They are? I recall something about carry being legal into the terminal, but not past the checkpoints. Maybe that was a proposed bill I heard about and not legal yet.

    You know, in this state, those signs don't carry the force of law. I wonder if the signs at airports are different? Aren't airports - even large international ones - privately owned?

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    Regular Member Kopis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DaveT319 View Post
    They are? I recall something about carry being legal into the terminal, but not past the checkpoints. Maybe that was a proposed bill I heard about and not legal yet.

    You know, in this state, those signs don't carry the force of law. I wonder if the signs at airports are different? Aren't airports - even large international ones - privately owned?
    i believe you may be thinking of the new Georgia law. It does allow people to carry up to the TSA checkpoint. whether signs carry the force of law or not in TN, it would be extremely unwise to OC into memphis airport without a substantial attorney fund and or be prepared to be shot.
    Last edited by Kopis; 05-30-2014 at 02:59 PM.

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    Regular Member Freedom1Man's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kopis View Post
    i believe you may be thinking of the new Georgia law. It does allow people to carry up to the TSA checkpoint. whether signs carry the force of law or not in TN, it would be extremely unwise to OC into memphis airport without a substantial attorney fund and or be prepared to be shot.
    Get some body armor then.
    Provision for free medical attendance and nursing, for clothing, for food, for housing, for the education of children, and a hundred other matters, might with equal propriety be proposed as tending to relieve the employee of mental strain and worry. --- These matters obviously lie outside the orbit of congressional power. (Railroad Retirement Board v Alton Railroad)

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    Regular Member DaveT319's Avatar
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    Ah, thanks.

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