Special needs child detained, patted down at Dallas airport spar - KUSI News - San Diego, CA

Special needs child detained, patted down at Dallas airport sparking debate over practices

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TEXAS (KUSI) — One mother was going after the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) Tuesday after her son was detained for more than an hour at a security checkpoint in the Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport Sunday.

“We have been through hell this morning,” Jennifer Williamson explained on Facebook. “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.”

According to The Daily Caller, Williamson's son — Aaron — has "SPD" which is a sensory processing disorder where the nervous system can't properly detect or organize signals from the senses.

In the video, Aaron is seen calmly complying to all the TSA agent's directions, including changing positions and raising and lowering his arms.

The TSA agent can be seen running the backs of his hands over the boy's buttocks and inner thigh. The video only shows about two minutes, but Williams claims they held her son for over an hour. 

“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?'” Williams continued. “I am livid.”

"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," Williams added.

The TSA released the following statement regarding the incident. 

“TSA allows for a pat-down of a teenage passenger, and in this case, all approved procedures were followed to resolve an alarm of the passenger’s laptop.

The video shows a male TSA officer explaining the procedure to the passenger, who fully cooperates. Afterward, the TSA officer was instructed by his supervisor, who was observing, to complete the final step of the screening process. 

In total, the pat-down took approximately two minutes, and was observed by the mother and two police officers who were called to mitigate the concerns of the mother.

The passengers were at the checkpoint for approximately 45 minutes, which included the time it took to discuss screening procedures with the mother and to screen three carry-on items that required further inspection."

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