The 57-year-old man told officers he forgot he had the loaded .380-caliber handgun in his carry-on bag.
This load .380-caliber handgun was found in a carry-on bag at a security checkpoint at Bangor International Airport on Monday. Credit: Courtesy of the Transportation Security Administration

A man allegedly tried to bring a handgun through a checkpoint at Bangor International Airport on Monday.

The 57-year-old man was attempting to go through a checkpoint when officers detected a .380-caliber handgun loaded with six bullets in his carry-on bag, according to the U.S. Transportation Security Administration.

The man, whose identity wasn’t released, told officers he forgot the gun was in the bag, and he was escorted to his vehicle, where he secured it, the agency said Tuesday.

It was the second gun detected at Bangor International Airport so far this year. Last year, three were detected at security checkpoints, while one each in 2021, 2020 and 2019,  according to the Transportation Security Administration.

Across New England, 12 guns have been found at security checkpoints in various airports.

“Once again our officers are on top of preventing firearms from entering the secure area of the airport,” said Michael Hughes, assistant federal security director for screening. “Passengers who are traveling with firearms need to ensure they are properly packed in their checked baggage, and declared. When an individual shows up at a checkpoint with a firearm it can slow or shut down security screening until the police resolve the incident.”

Passengers are permitted to travel with firearms in checked baggage if they are unloaded, packed in a hard-sided case, locked and packed separately from ammunition. Anyone who brings an undeclared firearm through a checkpoint can face criminal charges and civil penalties up to $15,000, even if the traveler has a concealed carry permit, according to the TSA. A typical first offense for carrying a handgun into a checkpoint is $3,000.