As the pat-downs make their prime-time debut during the Thanksgiving rush, the San Mateo and Santa Clara district attorneys offices said Wednesday that they would bring charges against TSA agents at SFO and San Jose airports, respectively, if they committed sexual crimes during searches. They said charges would be evaluated on a case-by-case basis and that prosecutors would take into account the fact that the agents were doing a job.On Opt Out Day, I hope as many people as possible opt out. I also hope that lots of them bring videocameras, cell phones with video capability, Flip cameras, or anything else suitable and videotape every single encounter between a TSA employee and a traveler.
If they cross a line, that's sexual battery, said Steve Wagstaffe, San Mateo County's chief deputy district attorney.
Wagstaffe said it's no different from when prosecutors charge dentists, doctors or police officers who abuse their power by touching people in a sexual manner. He said the key to proving a criminal offense is the sexual intent behind the groping.
"TSA does not have any special immunity from everybody else," Wagstaffe said. "If an employee of TSA inappropriately touches the privates of another person, and they do so with a sexual or lewd intent, then that's either a misdemeanor (if it's over the clothing) or a felony crime (possible when touching the skin)."
Opt out. Don't let them scan you. And document everything you can.