Did The TSA Go Overboard Again And Strip Search An 85 Year Old Woman?

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The 85 year grandmother from Long Island was on her way from JFK to Ft Lauderdale when she claims TSA agents pulled her into a private room and began to remove her clothes.

Similar TSA abuse allegations include Miss America claiming she was sexually assaulted by the TSA and a lady claiming TSA touched her breasts. All of these instances occurred in 2011 and apparently the TSA is just getting started. They have included the ability to search subways, cars, trucks, boat ferrys and buses in thier 2012 funding request.


Since this 85 year old grandmother has a defibrillator she requested to avoid the advanced technology screening. She is used to the secondary screening and said she is comfortable with the normal “pat down”. This time she claims the TSA pulled her in the private room and removed her clothes to perform a search.

But the Transportation Security Administration said that no strip search was performed. “While we regret that the passenger feels she had an unpleasant screening experience, TSA does not include strip searches as part of our security protocols and one was not conducted in this case,” the statement read.

“Why would I make up this story?” Zimmerman added. “In my wildest dreams, I couldn’t think of such a thing happening.”

“They took me into a private screening room and pulled my pants down and then pulled down my underwear,” the 4-feet-11 Zimmerman said. “If that’s not strip-searching, I don’t know what else you’d call it.”

Bottom Line

So who is right? Private screenings are not recorded. We may never know if the government went to far in this instance.

Do you think this is a false accusation or did the TSA go to far? I wonder what we have in store for us from the TSA in 2012.

You can read the full article here.

Editorial Note: Opinions, analyses, reviews or suggestions expressed on this site are those of the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed.

About The Weekly Flyer

The Weekly Flyer writes about travel from a business traveler perspective. He travels the world every week accumulating points and miles along the way.

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  1. A second victim was strip searched at JFK the following day. TSA strip-searches 88-year-old Ruth Sherman

    These two reports raise some serious questions about the extent of the TSA abuses in our airports. They deny that strip searches are part of their screening protocol, which is obviously a lie in view of five other similar reports this year. How many others have gone unreported?

    Pulling down a person’s pants and underwear meet most definitions of a strip search. This agency has been flagrantly assaulting people for a year now and has only been emboldened by their ability to get away with even the most egregious violations of basic standards of decency.

    TSA has repeatedly denied these types of abuses occur and usually blame the victim. This is the sort of defense that one would expect from a rapist or other assailant, not a Federal agency. The screeners and supervisors in these incidents must be prosecuted for what is clearly a criminal offense.

    This is at least the sixth reported TSA strip search of a passenger this year including the strip search of Shoshana Hebshi in Detroit on September 11th. In that incident TSA acknowledged that the search was recorded.

    How extreme must these TSA assaults become before Congress demands reform of this agency? This is the same agency that has had 62 screeners arrested for serious crimes, including murder and 10 charged with child sex crimes. This agency is obviously out of control and needs to be replaced.

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