A TSA contractor has been fired following a bizarre incident at Greater Rochester International Airport in Upstate New York this summer.
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According to WROC, Neal Strassner claims he was passing through a security checkpoint at the airport in late June when a worker handed him a note on a piece of ripped cardboard. As he walked away, he said she yelled to him “you going to open the note?”
“You ugly!!!” it read. The woman began laughing.
Video accessed through a Freedom of Information request Strassner processed supports his story, prompting Virginia-based security company VMD Corp. to fire the employee in question.
TSA hires independent security companies through a Screening Partnership Program.
“TSA holds contractors to the highest ethical standards and has zero tolerance for this type of behavior,” the agency said in a statement. “This instance, which involved a contract employee, was investigated immediately upon receiving the complaint by the traveler. The employee has since been terminated by the contractor.”
The video shows the woman reaching for another note after Strassner passes so it’s unclear how many unsuspecting travelers were targeted.
UPDATE: The airport security employee has been fired, according to TSA. Here’s the video of the employee passing the mean note, laughing about it, and reaching for more paper to begin writing again. #ROC pic.twitter.com/wXLcD8aLwz
— News 8 – WROC-TV (@News_8) August 15, 2019
To his credit, Strassner has taken the incident in stride.
“I’m really curious what the other notes said. I travel a lot and the airport normally is spectacular. This was a totally weird event that they [VMD Corp.] seemed to handle properly,” he wrote in an email to WROC. “I travel a lot and just want to make sure they get some credit to their organization and don’t let one lady trash their whole reputation.”