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3 TSA officers injured, 450 passengers redirected after ‘unprovoked’ attack by a female traveler

  • April 26, 2023

PHOENIX, Ariz. — Phoenix police arrested a female traveler early Tuesday morning after authorities say she attacked and injured three Transportation Security Administration agents during a security screening.

The agency told The Arizona Republic, part of the USA TODAY Network, that the traveler attacked staff at Checkpoint D in Terminal 4 around 5:55 a.m. local time, causing the checkpoint to temporarily close as responding Phoenix police officers arrested her. Two of the three agents were treated at the hospital for their injuries and have since been released.

“This unprovoked and brazen physical attack against our employees is unacceptable,” the agency said in a written statement. “We are grateful for our committed workforce and for the role they play in protecting the traveling public every day. Unfortunately, due to the actions of this traveler, this situation resulted in injuries to three of our TSA officers and inconvenienced approximately 450 travelers who TSA redirected to a nearby checkpoint for security screening.”

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It was not immediately clear what charges the female traveler may face or whether she remained in police custody as of Tuesday evening. Phoenix police identified the woman as 19-year-old Makiah Coleman and said she was booked into jail without incident.

TSA noted that threats, along with verbal and physical abuse to the staff, can lead to criminal penalties and fines of up to $13,910.

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