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Leesburg mother arrested after bringing loaded gun into Baltimore airport

The gun confiscated from Jennifer Downs of Leesburg. Courtesy Photo/TSA
A Leesburg woman was arrested Friday at Baltimore-Washington international airport after Transportation Security Administration officers found her trying to carry a loaded handgun past a security checkpoint.

Jennifer Downs, 33, of Leesburg, was not ticketed to fly but instead received a gate pass to escort her children to their gate, according to the TSA. Downs was found to be carrying a .380 caliber semi-automatic handgun in her handbag. The gun was loaded with six bullets.

The mother told TSA officials she forgot her loaded gun was in her handbag.

TSA officers detected the firearm as Downs was entering the TSA checkpoint. The gun was confiscated and Downs was charged in Anne Arundel County, Maryland, with carrying an unauthorized weapon prohibited in an airport and carrying and transporting a handgun.

People who bring firearms to checkpoints are subject to possible criminal charges from law enforcement and civil penalties from TSA of up to $12,000, according to the TSA. Details on how to properly travel with a firearm can be found through TSA.gov.


Who’s surprised by this story?  Another irresponsible and clueless weapon owner giving good weapon owners a bad reputation.  How many guns were stolen out of unlocked vehicles last year?  Apparently there needs to a common sense and awareness test prior to being handed a deadly weapon.  If checking where your weapon is isn’t part of your routine when you leave the house, car, etc., and you carry regularly, then your priorities are severely wrong.

Make Maryland Great Again and throw the legal book at her. Let’s make her an example by using the maximum penalties so self appointed crime fighters like her get the message, we have laws… follow them!

You wouldn’t be charged if you were famous. Remember David Gregory brought a prohibited ‘weapon’ into DC to show on TV.  No charges filed.

Some of us are more equal than others.

Sad. She lives near Dulles International but travels all the way to BWI for a flight.

Since January 20, 2017, people have gotten dumber by the day. Can’t wait for the circus tonight and see the fallout. LOL

Truck rider, it is harder for a woman to carry concealed in a holster, especially in warmer weather.  I carry a cross-body purse specifically designed for a pistol and you’d never know.  I’ll agree purses can get heavy but my 9mm’s weight makes a big difference when it’s in my bag.  If it’s just floating around loose in her purse—big problem on so many levels.

I also avoid Maryland and DC as much as possible.

Fredsanford, you would be surprised at the price difference. Over Thanksgiving my brother and his family flew up to stay, and the cost difference between Dulles and BWI was over $1000 for all three of them round trip. This has also been true for the other times(non-holiday) that they have come up. While I don’t like going into MD or BWI(gets confusing) I’d gladly make the hour one way trip to save them some money.

Movingfinger, I don’t disagree the evidence that she took it into the airport it’s plain as day. Stupid move on her part and she’ll face the consequences for it, as she should. I am saying mistakes do happen, and that I could see it happening being stored in a purse. But ignorance/forgetfulness is not an excuse!

I do disagree that we shouldn’t be able to conceal carry. If I decide to conceal carry a firearm which I do, you have no reason/right to know as a citizen that I am carrying. In basic it’s none of your business that I possess it as a means to protect me and my family if god forbid the need arises.

I don’t open carry because I don’t want the extra attention when someone notices it. I have had a family member who has had that happen, and has been stopped and questioned about it. Grant it, he likes to talk and teach people about the laws and things that go with it so that works for him.

Basically that part comes down to “To each their own” I suppose.

Truckrider…what you say makes some sense.  You go through a safety class (which can be as rigorous as “don’t point this end toward someone you don’t intend to shoot”) but still, we have evidence here that this woman carried a gun into an airport.   

To my mind, if you’re going to carry a gun around, wear it someplace so people can see it.  Seems only fair.

Don’t fly out of BWI when you live in Leesburg and Dulles is 15 mins away. The savings is negated by the time wasted getting to/from BWI. Plus it’s Maryland and there is no need to put money into the pockets of leftists liberals.

Honeycrisp- While im not defending her being careless/stupid. I can see some women forgetting it being in their purse. If her purse is anything like my grandmother’s and mother’s is, the weight of a gun isn’t going to register in the bag that doubles as a suitcase. It’s not like it was in a holster on her belt where you don’t forget that it’s there. I’ve never forgotten that it’s there!

I do agree stupid actions like this are what give CC holders bad names. While mistakes do happen this is a big one that’s going to cost her a lot. Between the airport and I’m sure MD will get into it for her having it in the state.

Also Movingfinger you in your car are more of a deadly weapon than her or anyone with a CC/Open carry. I don’t understand why people are so scared of someone legally having a gun, concealed or out in the open. If you have a CC permit in Va you’ve gone through a safety class and a background check to obtain it. If you’ve bought a gun you’ve most likely gone through a background check. I know that every time I buy one I do…Everytime. And in all honestly if it’s open carried they’re probably compliant, cause they have nothing to hide and know at some point they’re going to be questioned about it.

Nice to know fools walk among us…toting deadly weapons.

I should add if she’s that careless and forgetful around her children, she should not be carrying.  This is the type who give cc holders a bad name.

I have carried everywhere I go for about a year.  I’ve never once “forgotten” about the gun..  The sheer weight in a purse or holster is a constant reminder.

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