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TSA investigates pilot for posting videos online critical of security

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SAN FRANCISCO – A pilot who posted videos on YouTube that were critical of security at San Francisco International Airport is now the subject of an investigation, the pilot’s attorney says.

The pilot placed several videos on YouTube in late November or early December that showed how ground crew members can enter secure areas by swiping security cards and without undergoing further screening.

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The Transportation Security Administration is looking into whether the pilot revealed sensitive information, his attorney, Don Werno of the Santa Ana-based law firm Werno and Associates, said Friday.

The TSA wouldn’t answer questions but said in a statement it is responding to the situation and is confident in the security at San Francisco International Airport.

“As to access control at SFO, TSA is confident in the tools the airport has implemented and reminds passengers there are security measures in place that are both seen and unseen.”

The pilot remains employed with a major airline, but he has withdrawn from a program that trains flight crew to help prevent hijackings after authorities confiscated his federally issued firearm, Werno said. He declined to release the pilot’s name, citing concerns about the man’s job.

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In the footage, the pilot says that pilots undergo intense screening, but then have access to ax-like weapons that are stored in the cockpit in case of emergencies.

One of the videos, which number more than six, was of federal air marshals and sheriff’s deputies who came to the pilot’s home earlier this month to seize his federally issued firearm. The pilot had been allowed to carry the weapon on board as part of a program after 9/11 that trains certain flight crew to serve as “federal flight deck officers” to prevent hijackings.

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Werno said his client was upset about what he feels is lax security for ground crew, including baggage handlers, working at SFO while flight crews and passengers are subject to intense screening.

“The airport should be a security zone where everything that comes into the airport perimeter is checked,” he said.

The pilot removed the videos from YouTube after the TSA objected.

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The pilot, a 50-year-old Sacramento-area native, has worked for a major airline for the past 10 years and continues to fly, according to Werno. He has been advised by his airline not to disclose his identity.

In its statement, the TSA said it “responded and took action in this situation because the pilot in question was a FFDO (federal flight deck officer).”

“FFDOs must be able to maintain sensitive security information as a condition of the FFDO program,” the agency said. It did not elaborate.

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Enjoy this piece?

… then let us make a small request. Like you, we here at Raw Story believe in the power of progressive journalism — and we’re investing in investigative reporting as other publications give it the ax. Raw Story readers power David Cay Johnston’s DCReport, which we've expanded to keep watch in Washington. We’ve exposed billionaire tax evasion and uncovered White House efforts to poison our water. We’ve revealed financial scams that prey on veterans, and efforts to harm workers exploited by abusive bosses. We’ve launched a weekly podcast, “We’ve Got Issues,” focused on issues, not tweets. Unlike other news sites, we’ve decided to make our original content free. But we need your support to do what we do.

Raw Story is independent. You won’t find mainstream media bias here. We’re not part of a conglomerate, or a project of venture capital bros. From unflinching coverage of racism, to revealing efforts to erode our rights, Raw Story will continue to expose hypocrisy and harm. Unhinged from corporate overlords, we fight to ensure no one is forgotten.

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‘Go look at President Trump’s Twitter’: Portland right-wing rally organizer claims ‘mission success’

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The organizer of a far-right rally in Portland, Oregon claimed the event was a "success" after President Donald Trump attacked Portlandiers protesting the group.

"A confluence of protesters on opposite ends of the ideological spectrum merged on Portland’s waterfront Saturday in a tense but relatively uneventful face-off that brought national attention, including a tweet in the hours before the protest by President Trump decrying the city’s signature anti-fascist movement," the Oregonian reported Saturday.

When a similar right-wing rally in Charlottesville, Virginia killed Heather Heyer, Trump argued there were "fine people" on both sides of the "Unite the Right" rally.

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Why was Jeffrey Epstein buying size 5 women’s panties — while in jail?

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The Miami Herald has another bombshell report on Jeffrey Epstein, who died in a Manhattan jail while waiting to stand trial on federal sex crimes charges.

"A decade ago, during a brief stint in Palm Beach County Jail, convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein made an odd purchase at the facility’s store: two pairs of small women’s panties, size 5," the Herald reported Saturday night.

The newspaper noted, "the panties raise questions about why a childless male inmate, accused of sexually abusing girls as young as 14, would be allowed to buy female undergarments so small that they wouldn’t fit an average-sized adult woman."

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White nationalist Republican ridiculed after only 2 people show up for his town hall meeting

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Embattled Rep. Steve King (R-IA) suffered further humiliation on Saturday when only two people showed up for his town hall meeting with Iowa constituents.

King, who was stripped of all committee assignments for his white nationalism, was been an embarrassment for Republicans with his constant racism and misogyny.

A photo of the town hall meeting was posted on Twitter by Reuters photo editor Corinne Perkins.

https://twitter.com/corinne_perkins/status/1162806565109473280

Rep. King was quickly mocked in the comments.

Here's some of what people were saying:

https://twitter.com/sedespres/status/1162811223186006018

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