Hello readers! Julia Reynolds here with some unfortunate news from the world of travel. Three Transportation Security Administration (TSA) officers were injured in a physical attack by a female traveler on Tuesday morning. The incident took place just before 6 a.m. during the routine security screening process at a checkpoint in Phoenix, Arizona.
According to authorities, the attack was unprovoked and brazen. The woman, identified as 19-year-old Makiah Coleman, allegedly attacked three TSA officers resulting in injuries and the closure of the checkpoint. The Phoenix Police Department arrived at the scene and promptly arrested Coleman. It is not clear whether she has an attorney.
The TSA released a statement to PEOPLE expressing gratitude for their committed workforce and the role they play in protecting the traveling public every day. Unfortunately, due to the actions of this traveler, three TSA officers were injured, inconveniencing approximately 450 travelers who were redirected to a nearby checkpoint for security screening. Two of the three officers were taken to the hospital for their injuries and released after being treated.
The TSA also reminded travelers on signs posted in security checkpoints nationwide that “threats, verbal abuse or physical violence of any kind against our employees is not tolerated and will result in criminal penalties and fines of up to $13,910.” The TSA said they will pursue independent enforcement actions against the traveler.
“We are grateful for our committed workforce and for the role they play in protecting the traveling public every day,” TSA said in their statement to PEOPLE.
“Unfortunately, due to the actions of this traveler, this situation resulted in injuries to three of our TSA officers and inconvenienced approximately 450 travelers who TSA redirected to a nearby checkpoint for security screening,” the statement continued.
They added in the statement, “TSA will pursue independent enforcement actions against the traveler.”
This incident is a reminder of the importance of respecting and cooperating with TSA officers who work hard to ensure the safety of travelers. While travel can be stressful, we must remember to treat others with kindness and respect.
We wish the injured officers a speedy recovery and hope that Coleman receives the necessary legal consequences for her actions. As always, stay safe and kind while traveling.