New York TSA worker accused of sexually abusing passenger

29 Aug 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »


A Transportation Security Administration agent at LaGuardia Airport was busted for molesting a 21-year-old Korean exchange student after luring her into a bathroom by claiming she needed to be searched, authorities said Friday. The incident occurred earlier this week, when the 40-year-old TSA agent allegedly told the 21-year-old woman, a college student from Korea, that he needed to screen her for weapons after she had walked out of the sterile checkpoint area and into the area where passengers no longer need to be checked. The woman followed him up an escalator to the third floor, near a lounge and a bank of elevators, where he “lured” her inside a bathroom under the pretext of conducting a legitimate search, sources said. She questioned if he did this with other travelers, to which the TSA screener answered that he did, according to the charges. “Supposedly he took her into another area using his official position, being in uniform, and she thought it was a part of his official duty,” Port Authority of New York and New Jersey spokesman Joe Pentangelo said to Reuters. Two witnesses — women who work at the airport near where the pair passed — were able to help provide a description that matched the heavyset Oquendo, sources said.

When he was done, he told the victim he wasn’t going to check her luggage, then, in an apparent continuation of the ruse, said into his cell phone, “She’s clear — she doesn’t have any weapons or knives,” Brown said. “She was full of life,” Claire Williams told the Daily News while sitting on the steps of an apartment complex. “She had a big smile. She just loved playing basketball.” Jadann on Wednesday was playing with a group of kids on the dead-end block of E. 22nd St. near Ditmas Ave. at 5:10 p.m. when she ran onto the street from behind a delivery truck, police said. “I’ve been on this block 30 years. The speeders keep coming,” she said. “ ‘Child at play’ signs, speed bumps — we need something.” Jadann was the first pedestrian fatality on that block since at least 2009, according to most recent city Department of Transportation statistics.

He has been charged with second-degree unlawful imprisonment, official misconduct, third-degree sexual abuse, and second-degree harassment, according to WABC. He will face up to one year behind bars if he is convicted. “TSA holds its employees to the highest standards,” TSA Administrator Peter Neffenger said in a statement. “As such, we expect our employees to conduct themselves with integrity, professionalism, and with respect for the public we serve. The neighborhood is a “priority area” for the DOT for its higher level of pedestrians getting severely injured or dying from car crashes, compared to other neighborhoods in Brooklyn.

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