I went through much of the audio today that I recorded at the FLL checkpoint which refused me access to my gate a couple weeks ago. The quality of the audio makes my musically-trained ears cringe, but it’s sufficient to make out most of what was send by Transportation Security Manager Alejandro Chamizo:
(0:00) TSM: Hey, good morning.
(0:01) Jon: How you doin’?
(0:02) TSM: Good, Alex, nice to meet you.
(0:02) Jon: Jon.
(0:03) TSM: Jon, pleasure to meet you. I understand that you opted-out of the AIT?
(0:07) Jon: Yes.
(0:08) TSM: Now, we have to clear you. So, the only option is, now that you did opt-out, is you have to be patted-down. I understand that you have refused that also.
(0:17) Jon: I told them they could pat me down so long as they don’t touch my genitals or buttocks.
(0:21) TSM: Well, they do have to. That’s how it goes.
(0:24) Jon: (inaudible – repeating that he will not consent to touching his genitals or buttocks)
(0:32) TSM: That’s a concern for us, as security, and we want to know why now.
(0:38) Jon: (inaudible – explaining that he feels that a search that touches his genitals or buttocks is a violation of his rights)
(0:52) TSM: Well we can either do it here or at the BSO’s (Broward Sheriff’s Office) office.
(0:56) Jon: (inaudible – explaining that he should simply be allowed to leave if the TSA will not clear him for admittance to the sterile area)
(0:59) TSM: I cannot let you leave the checkpoint without being cleared.
Audio Clip (1:03, .mp3)
This, my friends, is an attempt at forcible search via intimidation, as well as false arrest, as it was made 100% clear that I am not free to go at this point. And let there be no doubt who did it — this guy (0:05, .mp3).
I sent in my FOIA request for the video (along with FTCA claim) almost a week and a half ago. When it comes, I’ll synchronize the audio I recorded with the video they provide and put it on YouTube for you all. 🙂
Update: A reader claiming to be a TSA employee claims that he has reviewed the list of TSMs at FLL, and that Mr. Chamizo is not on it. For clarity, I was told by a uniformed TSA screener that the man was a TSM, and his clothing and demeanor seemed congruent with that. I will continue to update when I receive new information.
Update 2: Broward County has confirmed for me that Mr. Chamizo is NOT a county employee. Until I see evidence otherwise, I stand by my original statement of TSA TSM (or similar position).
Bravo, Jon. Keep us apprised.
TSM thinks he has absolute authority over your person and belongings because you puchased a ticket on a commercial airline and thereby waived all your rights privacy. As far as the TSA is concerned you have ‘placed yourself under arrest’. TSO’s are i n s a n e.
I think part of the problem is that the courts over the last 30 years have allowed “some” of the rules to not apply in airports, and the TSA now feels that *none* of the rules apply. Until more courts start holding them accountable, in practice, they’re right. As a result, we need to make sure that we ask the courts to fix every mistake, every time, or else the TSA will continue to expand their idea of what they can get away with.
Keep up the good work Jon. I’ve been following your fight for a while and I must say I am impressed. I wish some of the organizations out there would put at least half the effort you put in to fighting this.
APPLAUSE! Keep up the fight,I support you 100%. If more people were like you the TSA would be gone in a relatively short time. We all need to do whatever we can to help this cause. Every small voice that joins together becomes loud.
I travel out of necessity and can’t avoid the TSA groping. But I have routinely and promptly always refused to go through their radiation machines and inhuman posture that they ask you to pose while they scan you nude. Every time I refused, they made me go through the mandatory pat down, including the more inhuman and appalling groping around the genital area.
There has been always a wait before they call out another “specialist” to pat you down. Couple of times, the TSO had asked the passengers waiting behind me, who were too eager to strike the pose and receive their mandatory dose of radiation, to go ahead around me. But I have always held the line telling everyone in slightly loud but respectful voice that it was first-come-first-serve, and I had been there before them, interrupting the “smooth flow”.
I believe that if there are just few more folks begin to hold the line like that, causing inconvenience, perhaps more people will pay attention, instead herd of sheep just following the orders and going through every machine and process the TSA can put them through.
This is why I don’t donate to ANYBODY’S political campaign any more, no matter how many promises coming from a politician on how they’re going to ride in on a big white horse and fix things.
On the other hand, I DO contribute to very targeted specific action’s like Jon’s, because he has the guts to go forward and push this issue. Thank you again Jon!