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TSA Conducts Car Search at SRQ

Department of Homeland Security pulled over random vehicles entering Sarasota-Bradenton International Airport Wednesday as part of an exercise.

People entering the t Wednesday may have seen Transportation Security Administration agents at the entrance inspecting cars.

The Department of Homeland Security launched what is known as a Visible Intermodal Prevention and Response Team as a way to visibly show security as a deterrent at the airport and conduct random vehicle checks for explosives.

"There is no credible information to suggest a specific threat at this time," according to a press release by the TSA.

The team is made up of TSA security officers, inpectors, Coast Guard, U.S. Marshals, canine teams, Customs and Border Protection agents and more.

CelticWhisper January 04, 2012 at 07:28 PM
Nice. Yet another incremental "baby step" toward random vehicle searches on the highway. TSA has already talked about wanting to branch out beyond air travel and they've been kicked out of Amtrak stations by Amtrak PD more than once. The entire agency needs to be abolished and its employees barred from ever working in security-related professions again.
John Steele January 04, 2012 at 07:55 PM
"No, I do not consent to a search of my vehicle without a proper warrant. Am I free to go or am I under arrest?"
Lisa Simeone January 04, 2012 at 08:17 PM
Some of us have been ringing alarm bells about this for years. And gotten nothing but sh*t for it from know-nothing friends/colleagues and so-called reporters. Oh, well, what's a little unwarranted search and seizure? We're already getting groped at the airport. Who cares about those quaint little things called rights anyway?
JoeRobertson January 04, 2012 at 08:38 PM
I don't know if it was the TSA, but some people in uniform had drug dogs sniff my car when I parked my car to take a cruise from a New York City port. I'm not sure if that was a private parking lot or not. Is that legal?
Lisa Simeone January 04, 2012 at 08:58 PM
Joe, no, it is not legal, but because people are allowing it left and right, then it will continue. The people who stand passively and allow themselves and their children to be groped at the airport are the same ones who will allow their cars to be stopped and searched. And if a kind officer should request "bend over and spread 'em," you know they'd comply with that, too. As John Steele above accurately wrote, the only thing you should say is, "No, I do not consent to a search of my vehicle without a proper warrant. Am I free to go or am I under arrest?" Over my dead body would I allow one of these goons to stop me and search my car without probably cause.
Lisa Simeone January 04, 2012 at 08:58 PM
Sorry, typo -- I obviously meant "probable cause."
Iam Wendy January 04, 2012 at 09:40 PM
"No, I do not consent to a search of my vehicle without a proper warrant. Am I free to go or am I under arrest?" Per the ACLU: "You have the right to remain silent. If you wish to exercise that right, say so out loud. You have the right to refuse to consent to a search of yourself, your car or your home."
Lynne January 04, 2012 at 11:41 PM
TSA is way out of control and the SRQ airport in particular is an absurd waste of taxpayer dollars. I flew out of SRQ earlier this week, fortunately before this exercise to "justify" their existence. I travel for business, nationwide, every week - average 4 airports per week. I know the "routine" and I know when they're making up their own "routine." What's truly pathetic is they actually believe they're "making us safe." As I recall, it was Dolphin Aviation at SRQ that trained the 9/11 terrorists. What in the name of all that is holy is being done today to prevent something like that from happening again? Certainly not the control-freak procedures violating my rights, to say nothing of basic common sense. To TSA - keep drinking the Kool-Aid!
Nisha Patterson January 05, 2012 at 01:29 AM
As someone that works directly, here at LAX, Los Angeles Apt., I must say Homeland is really pushing the envelope, here. This country is founded on laws. Even from a law enforcement perspective, I find this matter very disturbing.
Chris Saunders January 05, 2012 at 01:40 AM
I doubt TSA is pulling over cars. They are not law enforcement personnel but glorified security guards. Now the local Sheriff's Office or PD, could be doing that, along with real federal agents like, CBP. When you enter an airport or seaport, you have to be observant. Is it posted that all vehicles and persons are subject to a search. If so, by entering such a location, you are giving consent. That has been the case for years on college and public school property. Visitors beware!
Dan Quarteran January 05, 2012 at 02:41 AM
Wow, check out the Trojan Horse. The video catches a car transporter just rolling by the checkpoint - loaded with multiple vehicles unattended by their owners! Genuine potential of hidden threat and they don't even seem to notice. TSA@SRQ = Fail.
frequentflyer January 05, 2012 at 04:23 AM
TSA "blue shirts" are not law enforcement officers and have no authority to pull over anyone. What "probable cause" is there for searching a car on this public road?
canary January 05, 2012 at 04:25 AM
Only students are forced to that BS that the school has the right to inspect their vehicle. Any non-student is still able to tell them "get a warrant" for a peek. The disgusting thing is the public schools are now equipped with such high tech cameras the employees are checking to see which mothers don't wear underwear while they are going through the drop off line at the school. Perps in need of new employment there as well.
OneSovereignCitizen January 05, 2012 at 06:17 AM
Complaining is informative but irrational because it offers no solution for stopping these security freaks -- the ONLY way to stop them is via an Article V AmendmentS Convention by "We The People," not Congress. A step in the right direction would be something like http://www.article-v-convention.com/files/28th-amendment.html
Bill Fisher January 05, 2012 at 06:27 AM
Welcome to Stasi America, papers please. This is an outrageous infringement on the 4th amendment and people must refuse to submit. We have now descended into a police state where anyone can have their person or property inspected and detained without probable cause or due process. Congress has failed miserably in protecting Americans and must be replaced in November.
Lisa Simeone January 05, 2012 at 11:23 AM
Chris Saunders, yes, the TSA is doing this and has been for years. It's part of their aptly named VIPR program. These VIPR teams have been infesting other transportation hubs -- trains, buses, subways, ferries, and, yes, highways -- since 2005. And no, we do not consent to these searches just by setting foot on public transportation or in our cars!
Lisa Simeone January 05, 2012 at 11:26 AM
frequentflyer, there is no probable cause. People have the right to refuse consent But as you know, most people either don't know or don't care. Judging by the behavior of the sheeple at the airport, who passively stand by while they're being groped, even to the point of sexual assault, I think it's a fair bet that they'll allow their rights to be shredded everywhere else as well.
Lora January 06, 2012 at 02:29 AM
Apparently we do NOT have the right to refuse to consent to a search of "yourself". If that were true, we wouldn't be having the horror stories from the airport.
Lora January 06, 2012 at 02:31 AM
Since when does "posting a sign" override laws? (Like the need for a search warrant.)
loops January 06, 2012 at 04:03 AM
NO, it was NOT at Dolphin aviation at SRQ where certain members of the notorious unmentionables paid for and rec'd some measure of flight training, It was at a now defunct flight school in Venice (the obsolete building has since been leveled) south of SRQ that certain bad things took place. Venice airport is a small municipal airport (no large commercial jet operations). SRQ is only just marginally larger than VNC. None of these unrelated factoids rationalize this response by TSA. There's enough Bravo Sierra to go around w/o slandering unrelated parties. SRQ and Dolphin Aviation are not hotbeds of terrorist activity. Give me a break!
Chuck P April 16, 2012 at 01:48 AM
Here Here! I tip my glass of finely tuned bourbon to you sir or madam. Cheers!
Chuck P April 16, 2012 at 01:49 AM
You would make Mike Church of Sirius Patriot 125 quite proud indeed.
John Nyberg April 16, 2012 at 02:33 AM
Yes sir! Whatever happened to “I do not consent to be searched”. This all with no Reasonable Suspicion; no Probable Cause and no warrant. Hmmm; looks like we have already lost the battle. Now BO says he can “indefinitely detain” you with no Warrant, no incitement, no legal representation, no access to visitation or communication. I wonder if they will bother to x-ray or pat us down on the way to the camps. Will Willard Romney have the courage to dismantle this evil behemoth or will the establishment elitists just deal with him.
John H Cisler June 29, 2012 at 07:44 PM
I used to say "god Bless America" I now say "God save and bless America" John H. Cisler
Stuntman Mike July 12, 2012 at 02:13 AM
Beware when someone wants to "save lives" or "make something safer."
Elatia Grimshaw June 25, 2013 at 10:56 AM
In theory, the TSA could indeed start doing random vehicle inspections on public roads. After all, "driving is a privilege, not a right".

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