Fox 13 talks to the Utah Valley University student who shot the video with his cell phone.
TSA officials pat down young boy without shirt caught on camera
SALT LAKE CITY — A video shot at the Salt Lake City International Airport is stirring up the debate over airport security and is now gaining national attention.
The 39-second cell phone video posted on You Tube by a Utah Valley University student shows TSA officials, doing a pat-down on a young boy with his shirt off. The video has gained more than 700,000 hits.
The student who shot the video, Luke Tait, told Fox 13 what happened before he began recording.
“The father assisted a little bit and he stood by his son and held his arms out, trying to help the TSA agent kind of perform the pat down. He did that twice, had to hold his son’s arms up,” Tait said.
Tait says the young boy did not set off the metal detector.
“The father got a little upset and he tore his son’s shirt off and gave it to the TSA agent and at this time, the TSA agent was yelling sir, sir at the man, the father of the kid,” Tait explained.
Tait said he was later approached by a man in a black suit who did not identify himself and asked to delete the video.
“When he approached me, he obviously thought there was something I had that was incriminating to TSA,” Tait said.
Utah Congressman Jason Chaffetz said it is important to know all the facts before people rush to judgment, but said it is clear that the TSA has crossed the line.
“Between the whole body imaging and the pat downs and kids having to take their shirts off, it just seems like we’re going a little too far,” Chaffetz said.
The Transportation Security Administration would not comment directly, but recently released a statement regarding the incident, saying:
“On Friday November 19 a father and son presented at a TSA checkpoint at SLC. The child alarmed as he walked through the metal detector. The father removed his son’s shirt in order to speed up the screening process. Once screening was complete, both proceeded to the gate for their flight.”
Watch the You Tube video of the pat down here.