TSA inspectors with drug-sniffing dogs patrol platforms
Paul Joseph Watson
Wednesday, July 25, 2012
Wednesday, July 25, 2012
Footage shot at the Oceanside Transit Center in Southern California documents how the rollout of TSA workers is expanding out of the airports and into train stations and bus terminals.
There were about six or seven TSA agents patrolling the station according to the uploader of the video.The clip shows TSA inspectors standing with police and drug-sniffing dogs. The TSA agents told the film maker that he was still allowed to take video and photos at the train station but may get “questioned” for doing so.
The Transportation Security Administration was embarrassed earlier this year when Houstonians revolted over a program that would have seen TSA workers routinely ride city buses in the name of spotting terrorists and criminals.
During a trial of the program, bus passengers were harassed and interrogated by TSA workers, prompting a backlash and an anger-filled public meeting during which residents expressed resentment about being asked questions about their journey and having their bags searched.
“The good citizens of Houston are not stupid enough to believe Metro was actually expecting to find terrorists at a bus stop here. Instead, it was used as a pretext to harass people,” said Robert Fickman, past president of the Harris County Criminal Lawyers Association, adding that the exercise was clearly unconstitutional.
However, the agency itself is expanding, with Congress recently giving the green light for extra funding that has increased the number of unannounced TSA checkpoints beyond the 9300 that took place last year.Although Police Chief Victor Rodriguez hinted that the program may return, the furious reaction of travelers has thus far prevented TSA workers from riding Houston buses since the exercise.
This $25 million dollar injection has helped fund the expansion of the VIPR program which has TSA agents patrolling highways, train stations, bus terminals and other transport hubs.
As a whistleblower recently revealed, more TSA workers are also being used in airports at locations besides security lanes.
“We’re doing patrols in the parking lot with dogs, we’re even going as far out to the train station because the train station is connected to the airport here and we have guys walking around the train station, walking around the rental cars, we’re inspecting cars coming into the parking garage, I mean we’ve fully expanded – we’re no longer just at the gate and just at the security checkpoint,” said the whistleblower, a TSA supervisor.
The use of TSA workers to search train passengers has proved highly controversial in the past. In one instance TSA agents were used to conduct pat downs of passengers, including children, who had already completed their journey when arriving in Savannah.