Tag Archives: TSA agent

TSA agent arrested for sexually abusing passenger at LaGuardia

| aaltamirano@queenscourier.com

Photo via Flickr Creative Commons/Thomas Lillis IV

Updated 4:22 p.m. 

A TSA agent has been charged for sexually assaulting a college student inside a LaGuardia Airport bathroom earlier this week while making her believe she had to be searched for weapons, according to the district attorney’s office.

Port Authority detectives arrested Maxie Oquendo, 40, of Manhattan after Tuesday’s incident and he is currently awaiting arraignment in Queens Criminal Court on charges of unlawful imprisonment, official misconduct, sexual abuse and harassment. If convicted, he faces up to one year in jail.

According to Queens District Attorney Richard Brown, on Tuesday the 21-year-old student , who was reportedly from Korea, had arrived at LaGuardia Airport on a flight from Salt Lake City when she was approached by Oquendo in Terminal B after she walked out of the sterile checkpoint area and entered an area where passengers do not have to be screened. He then told her, “Hey, ma’am, I need to scan your body and your luggage.”

Oquendo then motioned with his hand for the victim to follow him to the bathroom, where they waited outside for about 10 minutes before entering, authorities said. Inside, the victim then allegedly told Oquendo, “You can’t scan me but you can have a woman scan me because I am a girl.” He then told her to face the mirror and raise both arms up. The woman asked Oquendo if he checked all passengers and he allegedly said yes.

Oquendo then had the victim lift up her shirt and unzip her pants, and he touched her breasts and other areas of her body both over and under her clothing, prosecutors said. He then told her that he was not going to check her luggage and into his cellphone said, “She’s clear. She doesn’t have any weapons or knives.”

“The defendant is accused of an egregious abuse of his position as a government screener at LaGuardia Airport to sexually victimize a young woman. Such alleged conduct cannot, under any circumstances, go unpunished,” Brown said.

According to the TSA, its officers do not have the authority to conduct a secondary pat-down outside of a checkpoint area. The agency added that opposite gender screening requiring a pat-down can only be done when there are no female officers available and a witness is present during such pat-downs, which must be conducted in a designated private screening area in a TSA checkpoint.


Queens man nabbed at JFK for allegedly taking TSA agent’s handbag    

| ctumola@queenscourier.com


A Queens man was arrested at John F. Kennedy International Airport for stealing a TSA agent’s handbag not long after he was busted at the airport for unlawful solicitation of ground transportation, according to the Port Authority.

Carlos Sanchez, 61, is accused of draping his jacket over the agent’s handbag and walking away with it at about 7:50 a.m. on Thursday in Terminal 5. He only made it a few steps before he was caught, PA spokesman Joseph Pentangelo said.

The handbag contained her credit cards and TSA equipment that is commonly used for K-9 training.

Sanchez was arrested by Port Authority police and charged with grand larceny and criminal possession of stolen property, according to authorities.

Within the past two weeks, while working as a livery driver, Sanchez was arrested at JFK for unlawful solicitation of ground transportation, Pentangelo said. As a result of a violation of a condition of that arrest, he will also be charged with criminal trespass and trespass in Thursday’s incident.


Queens School Bus Accident Injures Six

| jlane@queenscourier.com

Graphic by Jay Lane

Queens School Bus Accident Injures Six

A mangled school bus across from a just as badly damaged car was the resulting wreckage from an accident in Queens Thursday, a testament to how close the collision came to being deadly. A driver of a Nissan Altima struck a bus on Glassboro Avenue and Liverpool Street in Jamaica. “It ran the stop sign right there and basically t-boned the school bus, and it was like a deflection,” said one witness. “Almost hit little children crossing the street,” said another. “It’s wild around here.” The Nissan driver missed the children, but the bus driver lost control and struck a 59-year-old woman, pinning her between the bus and the house. Read More: NY1

TSA agent busted in laptop ‘lift’

A federal TSA screener at La Guardia Airport was arrested for allegedly swiping a pricey laptop from a college student at a security gate. “He’s supposed to be protecting our country, but this shows his true intent,” fumed alleged victim Conley Averett, 21, who attends Parsons School of Design. Now-fired TSA screener Edwin Rosario, 27, was charged Tuesday with grand larceny and possession of stolen property for taking Averett’s $1,300 computer Dec. 19 as Averett hopped a Delta flight to Detroit and left it behind, authorities said. Read More: New York Post

Cops kill armed Brooklyn man; girlfriend says victim was investigating break-in at his home

Police shot and killed an armed man whose girlfriend said had gone outside in his pajamas to check on a possible break-in at his Brooklyn home Thursday night. Dwayne Browne, 27, was shot once in the chest about 10:40 p.m. outside 943 Schenck Ave. in East New York and died at Brookdale Hospital at 11:46 p.m., police said. “The officers told me they had to shoot him,” said his girlfriend, who gave only her first name, Juanita. “They kept calling him the shooter. The officer said, ‘I’m sorry. It was one of us. But he wouldn’t put the gun down.’’ Read More: Daily News

Mayor Michael Bloomberg makes his State of the City speech

Mayor Michael Bloomberg made his State of the City highlighting ambitious plans to continue his overhaul of the “broken system” he faced when he entered office. Before the mayor made his way to the podium a short video was played chronicling his “journey” to get to this year’s speech.  Along the way he poked fun at himself — he danced to Lady Gaga who helped him ring in the new year with a kiss — and issues he has fought for over the years, including bike lanes and taxis in the outer boroughs.  It also featured former Mayor Ed Koch welcoming motorists to “his” bridge, the former Queensboro Bridge. Read More: Queens Courier


Track Work To Halt 7 Train Service On Weekends

Beginning the weekend of January 21, 7 trains will not run between Queensboro Plaza and Times Square. Riders can rely on the N train and take a free shuttle bus to the stops not being serviced. The Metropolitan Transportation Authority maintains the shutdown is absolutely necessary to make long-needed infrastructure repairs and upgrades. Community leaders say any steps have to be taken as quickly as possible and argue the line is a crucial way through several neighborhoods that are not serviced by any other trains. Read More: NY1


Glock of the ‘walk’: Wrist slap for Tea Partier’s La Guardia gun

A Tea Party activist busted at La Guardia Airport trying to place his California-licensed handgun into checked baggage got off with a disorderly-conduct charge yesterday. Mark Meckler’s no-jail deal comes as city district attorneys are grappling with a growing number of otherwise law-abiding gun owners who accidentally run afoul of New York’s strict gun-control regulations. “Apparently, this happens to hundreds of people per year in New York City,” Meckler, co-founder of the influential Tea Party Patriots, fumed on his Web site after court today. Read More: New York Post

City Worker Pleads Not Guilty To Hate Crime Charges In Connection With Parks HQ Noose

A Parks Department worker pleaded not guilty Thursday after he was arrested on hate crime charges and accused of a hanging a doll by a noose in the department’s Bronx headquarters. Fariz Ahmemulic, 28, was arrested Wednesday after two fellow employees said he told them he had put it up. He was charged with multiple counts, including aggravated harassment as a hate crime. The arraignment came after the doll was found last month near the working space of an African American employee. Ahmemulic said he had nothing to do with the incident. Read More: NY1

Bronx Man Arraigned On Assault Charges In Connection With Fatal Parking Lot Fight

As Andre Muller walked out of State Supreme Court in the Bronx on Thursday, his predicament shows just how quickly a situation can get out of control, changing lives forever. In June, Muller was fighting with two attendants at a Bronx parking lot. His son, Isayah Muller, was stabbed to death when he jumped into the fight. At his latest court appearance, Andre Muller pleaded not guilty to second-degree assault and possession of a weapon, which was the shovel he used during the fight. “There’s is no doubt that Mr. Muller, my client, should have retreated from the location,” said defense lawyer Lawrence Fredella. “There is also no doubt that he was threatened before taking any physical action.” Read More: NY1