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"She Took My Monkey's Gun:" St. Louis TSA Agent Confiscates Cowboy Toy's Weapon

Categories: News

1208sock_monkey.jpg
Phyllis May via KING5
Rooster Monkburn, you bad monkey!
A TSA agent at Lambert-St. Louis International Airport proved she takes the rules very seriously when she confiscated a toy gun from a Seattle traveler's cowboy sock monkey.

The plushy sock monkey named (and dressed) after Rooster Cogburn, the tough, one-eyed marshal played by John Wayne in True Grit was holstered with a two-inch pistol, courtesy of his creator, Phillis May, who sews and sells the toys.

truegrit.jpg
Amazon
"She took my monkey's gun," May tells Seattle TV station King 5. "Rooster Monkburn has been disarmed, so I'm sure everyone on the plane was safe."

See also: Video: Lambert Airport TSA Tries to Pat Down Three-Year-Old In Wheelchair, Going to Disney

May repeated her conversation with the TSA agent to Seattle media, and it goes something like this:

TSA agent: (Holds up bag.) Whose is this?

Phyllis May: Mine!

TSA: (Pulls out teeny pistol.) This is a gun.

PM: No, it's not a gun. It's a prop for my monkey.

TSA: If I held it up to your neck, you wouldn't know if it was real or not.

PM: Really?

TSA: I'm going to have to confiscate the gun, and I'm supposed to call police.

PM: Well, go ahead.

(Pause.)

PM: Really? You're kidding me, right?

TSA: No, it looks like a gun.

In the end, the TSA agent took the gun but didn't call police. The TSA responded to the issue Monday, saying in a release: "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."

So maybe next time, May should just check her toys' weapons like the rest of us.

"I understand she was doing her job, but at some point doesn't common sense prevail?" May said.

Follow Lindsay Toler on Twitter at @StLouisLindsay. E-mail the author at Lindsay.Toler@RiverfrontTimes.com.


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19 comments
Michael Mahler
Michael Mahler

It was ridiculous. The buckle was nearly flat. Not realistic at all. I wish I had a pic of it.

Michael Mahler
Michael Mahler

Ridiculously stupid. We had one customer that had a gun buckle. They had to stop everything and call a gun "specialist" to determine that it was in fact a buckle that any child could distinguish. smh

Jim Harvatin
Jim Harvatin

Really now that's someone who takes their job seriously !!!

Jimmie Thomptson
Jimmie Thomptson

bringing a gun hidden in a toy, through the airport....REALLY...how stupid can one be????

pocestnik
pocestnik

TSA = Taking Scissors Away. 

So they are considering allowing knives on flights, which can be used to cause physical harm, but won't allow an obviously fake gun because you could bluff someone with it? Makes sense when you consider TSA Agents and Supervisors weren't smart enough to make it into a police academy.

Susie Nicholson
Susie Nicholson

I'm just glad the alert TSA agent got the guns before the monkey boarded. Another disaster averted!

Chris Kellie Dowdy
Chris Kellie Dowdy

They should have taken the sock monkey also.....everyone knows you could choke someone to death with a monkey.

rj1002
rj1002

Oh, TSA is being run by elementary school administrators now, is it? Well, I fully expect to see an acrylic box filled with rotting chicken nuggets bitten into the shape of a pistol when next I fly.

Michael Fortner
Michael Fortner

This is so fucking ridiculous, the TSA agents definitely aren't hired because they are smart, they are hired because they have a pulse.

Norma Cole Sosko
Norma Cole Sosko

TSA has gotten out of hand!!! If a person was going to bring a weapon on a plane I think it may be bigger than a 1/2". Guess they don't hire those agents for their brains!!!

Chris Vangel
Chris Vangel

This has got to be the most ignorant TSA story I've heard yet. "If I held it to your neck you wouldn't know if it was real or not." Really? Come on folks, you CAN'T be this damn stupid can you? Sock Monkey is now dangerous?!? Join me in weeping for the death of common sense.

Sue Kasen
Sue Kasen

I am sure that poor girl was just following what she was told to do. With the current economy, she was probably afraid she would lose her job, so she followed protocol. Hopefully she was not that naïve.

Rita Konertz-Lee
Rita Konertz-Lee

A few years back my husband was traveling to meet my kids and I and had a bag of toy army menfor my son as a gift. They were confiscated because the army men had "guns". Ridiculous!!!

Lynn Pevey
Lynn Pevey

Don't think I won't be calling the ATF on the next Sock Monkey I see...lmao!

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