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TSA’s two-minute pat-down of a boy at the airport was ‘horrifying,’ his mother says

Mother shares video of her son's 'horrifying' TSA pat-down

A video that has gone viral on Facebook shows a TSA agent patting down a boy at DFW airport. Jennifer Williamson, the boy’s mother, posted the video to Facebook on Sunday morning, writing that she was “livid” at the TSA agent who detained her son.
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A video that has gone viral on Facebook shows a TSA agent patting down a boy at DFW airport. Jennifer Williamson, the boy’s mother, posted the video to Facebook on Sunday morning, writing that she was “livid” at the TSA agent who detained her son.

A Transportation Security Administration official is drawing heavy criticism after a video that shows him patting down a boy at DFW Airport went viral on social media over the weekend.

Jennifer Williamson, the boy’s mother, posted the video to Facebook on Sunday morning, writing that she was “livid” at the TSA agent.

The two-minute clip shows Williamson’s son, Aaron, standing in a security area at the airport. The agent begins patting down the boy’s arms, back and torso before moving to the back of his shorts and the insides of his legs.

 

We have been through hell this morning. They detained Aaron for well over an hour at DFW. (And deliberately kept us from our flight... we are now on an alternate) We were treated like dogs because I requested they attempt to screen him in other ways per TSA rules. He has SPD and I didn't want my child given a pat down like this. Let me make something else crystal clear. He set off NO alarms. He physically did not alarm at all during screening, he passed through the detector just fine. He is still several hours later saying "I don't know what I did. What did I do?" I am livid. Please, share... make this viral like the other children's videos with TSA... I wish I had taped the entire interchange because it was horrifying. We had two DFW police officers that were called and flanking him on each side. Somehow these power tripping TSA agents who are traumatizing children and doing whatever they feel like without any cause, need to be reined in.

Posted by Jennifer Williamson on Sunday, March 26, 2017

By Monday afternoon, Williamson’s video had been shared more than 22,000 times on Facebook and had more than 1 million views. Many of the 12,000 comments criticized the TSA agent, saying the pat-down was excessive.

A statement from TSA said “all approved procedures” were followed by the agent “to resolve an alarm of the passenger’s laptop.”

TSA policies, according to the statement, allow for a pat-down of teenage passengers.

Williamson wrote that her son had been detained by security for more than hour; the TSA statement said that Williamson and her son were held at the security checkpoint for about 45 minutes.

At one point, two DFW Airport police officers also got involved, “flanking” her son on each side, Williamson wrote. The TSA statement said the officers were called to the checkpoint “to mitigate the concerns of the mother.”

Williamson wrote that she had requested that her son not be patted down because he has sensory processing disorder, a condition that can cause anxiety in children when they are touched, according to the Star Institute for Sensory Processing Disorder.

“I wish I had taped the entire interchange because it was horrifying,” Williamson’s post said. “Somehow these power tripping TSA agents who are traumatizing children and doing whatever they feel like without any cause, need to be reined in.”

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