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Father Outraged at TSA’s ‘Uncomfortable’ Pat-Down of His 10-Year-Old Daughter

A two-minute video showing a very thorough and some say aggressive TSA pat down of a 10-year-old girl is causing a firestorm of controversy surrounding the agency’s treatment of the child.

A video of a Transportation Security Administration (TSA) screener performing a pat down on a young girl at Raleigh–Durham International Airport (RDU) over the holidays has become one of the first viral video sensations of the new year. The short video captured on a mobile device by the girl’s father has also created controversy over what some are calling a clear case of overzealousness by the screener.

The girl is repeatedly inspected and prodded by a female TSA screener for nearly the entire length of the two-minute video. The captured images have caused widespread outrage on social media and led to questions about the federal agency’s policies regarding the treatment of minors.

The girl’s father, Kevin Payne, who called the ordeal “an uncomfortable situation,” said he did not raise an objection at the time, but later posted his video online. ”My goal was just to clear security as quickly as possible so we could make our flight even though I knew that in my mind they shouldn’t be doing what they were doing,” Payne told NBC affiliate KNSD in San Diego. “I didn’t want to make an issue of it there or then because it wasn’t the time or place and I didn’t want to further traumatize my daughter.”

For her part, 10-year-old Vendela said it was the seemingly endless nature of the pat down that made her feel uncomfortable. “I know it’s to keep everybody on the plane safe, but she kept patting me down,” the girl told NBC News in an on-camera interview. “Pat down, pat down. It was like, over and over.”

Payne says it took his family nearly an hour to clear the TSA checkpoint because of the extra security screening that was triggered because his daughter inadvertently left a pouch containing juice in her carry-on bag.

[Screenshot via YouTube]

Comments are Closed.
asantaga January 14, 2016

I dont see anything wrong with the pat down. Maybe a little "over the top" but when you have someone "filming you" you are bound to make sure you follow the book 1000% and Id rather all pat downs be over the top and nothing gets through than.. well it looks ok..... I bet if she missed something the father would have been outraged that she missed something. Also the TSA lady was explaining everything in detail to the little girl so again nothing wrong.. Bottom line, with security the way it is, get used to it, or... dont catch planes and drive everywhere...

coastguard January 14, 2016

I guess the agent would have made a quicker check if she would not have been filmed. She did her job. Period.

zilberbrand January 14, 2016

Wow, just wow. All you people above me are concerned with is if the pat down is normal TSA procedure. What happened to us?? NONE of it ok. NO pat down like should ever be done to a child. Is the agent molesting the girl, doesn't look that way to me, just being a government cog executing her line of code like a toaster. Now here we are debating how much groping of a 10 year old is ok. You're all pathetic, making me sick.

williamdowell January 9, 2016

I am one of those people who cant stand full body scanners and aggressive agents etc, but I see nothing wrong with how the TSA woman behaved towards this girl. May be I'm blind but I don't see an assault.

d00t January 9, 2016

If you really thought your girl was being assaulted, you would be in there ripping the TSA agent off in your daughter in a heartbeat -- and if you DIDN'T do anything and your daughter was being assaulted in front of you - it's child neglect. Which one is it? Video is a waste of time. It's standard pat down and the girl showed no signs of physical distress. This parent needs to get a grip on life.