TSA: Eight Newark officers fired for violating procedures

Posted at 10:35 PM, Jun 27, 2012
and last updated 2012-06-27 22:35:33-04

(CNN) —  Eight Transportation Security Administration screening officers were fired Wednesday from their posts at Newark Liberty Airport in New Jersey for violating proper screening procedures, a TSA official said.

Among the violations lodged against the eight officers was sleeping on the job, the official said. The official, who asked not to be identified, did not specify how many of the eight were caught napping when they were supposed to be checking baggage.

The six men and two women were caught on surveillance camera violating various protocols in December. They were all assigned to the Terminal B screening room, according to the TSA official.

After the Homeland Security Office of Inspector General began its investigation, which included looking through hours and hours of security footage, the officers were suspended from doing screening functions and moved to modified duty, said the official.

The officers had between five and 10 years of experience working at airports.

“The decision to take disciplinary action, including the proposed immediate removal of eight individuals from the TSA, reaffirms our strong commitment to ensure the safety of the traveling public and to hold all our employees to the highest standards of conduct and accountability,” the TSA said in a statement.

The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, which oversees Newark Airport, referred calls to the TSA.

The TSA official said the agency will not be releasing the video surveillance footage at this time.