TSA says guard who was away from post during Newark Airport security breach will be back on the job


Last updated: Thursday March 11, 2010, 6:41 PM
BY KAREN ROUSE
The Record
Staff Writer

The guard who was away from his post at Newark Airport when a graduate student ducked into a secured area was notified today of his discipline, a Transportation Security Administration official said today.
The federal agency, which has not named the guard, would not release details of the disciplinary action, saying it is a protected personnel matter, but confirmed the guard will be back on the job.
He was placed on paid administrative leave on January 5 – two days after Rutgers student Haisong Jiang ducked under a rope and walked into a passengers-only area to see his girlfriend. Jiang on Tuesday pleaded guilty to defiant trespass, a disorderly conduct offense, at Newark Municipal Court.
Jiang, 28, of Piscataway, was sentenced to 100 hours of community service, a $500 fine and $158 in court fees.
Spokeswoman Ann Davis said the guard’s leave ends Saturday. He was paid during more than two-month review of the incident. Davis said she could not disclose his level of pay, but said base pay ranges for TSA security officers can range from $25,141 to $43,357, depending on longevity, conduct, performance and other factors.
The breach resulted in a six-hour shutdown of Terminal C at Newark Liberty International Airport as passengers had to be re-screened. It also prompted several changes. Among them was the installation of physical barriers in Terminal C to limit public access to exit lanes, the repositioning of security guards closer to secure areas and the regular monitoring of security cameras.
The airport cameras were found to have not been recording at the time of the breach; investigators had to rely on Continental Airlines cameras.
TSA also apologized for the breach. "We took full responsibility for the breach," said Davis, saying the agency "regretted the inconvenience that it caused passengers."
E-mail: rouse@northjersey.com
The guard who was away from his post at Newark Airport when a graduate student ducked into a secured area was notified today of his discipline, a Transportation Security Administration official said today.

The federal agency, which has not named the guard, would not release details of the disciplinary action, saying it is a protected personnel matter, but confirmed the guard will be back on the job.

He was placed on paid administrative leave on January 5 – two days after Rutgers student Haisong Jiang ducked under a rope and walked into a passengers-only area to see his girlfriend. Jiang on Tuesday pleaded guilty to defiant trespass, a disorderly conduct offense, at Newark Municipal Court.

Jiang, 28, of Piscataway, was sentenced to 100 hours of community service, a $500 fine and $158 in court fees.

Spokeswoman Ann Davis said the guard’s leave ends Saturday. He was paid during more than two-month review of the incident. Davis said she could not disclose his level of pay, but said base pay ranges for TSA security officers can range from $25,141 to $43,357, depending on longevity, conduct, performance and other factors.

The breach resulted in a six-hour shutdown of Terminal C at Newark Liberty International Airport as passengers had to be re-screened. It also prompted several changes. Among them was the installation of physical barriers in Terminal C to limit public access to exit lanes, the repositioning of security guards closer to secure areas and the regular monitoring of security cameras.

The airport cameras were found to have not been recording at the time of the breach; investigators had to rely on Continental Airlines cameras.

TSA also apologized for the breach. "We took full responsibility for the breach," said Davis, saying the agency "regretted the inconvenience that it caused passengers."


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