David Stavropolous says that a TSA agent injured his testicles in March 2016 during a search at O’Hare airport in Chicago.
A video of the incident caught on a surveillance camera shows the TSA agent running his hand up into Stavropolous’s groin area.
“I turned around and said, you injured me,” Stavropolous told WMAQ. “I’d like to talk to your supervisor!”
Stavropolous said he was threatened with arrest, and told he would have to undergo a strip-search in another area.
“I said if you’re going to do a strip search, I refuse,” Stavropolous recalled. “I’ll do it out in the open!”
Eventually, Stavropolous had to undergo another patdown, but missed his flight: “I asked at that point, since I was going to miss my flight could I just leave. But they made me stay to do the additional patdown.”
Stavropolous told the news station that he is going to have surgery in October: “I see a urologist once or twice a month. I’m still in pain—I still have issues with bleeding.”
Attorney Joel Handler, who represents Stavropolous, said: “This was a body scan—they knew exeactly what Dave had on him and what he didn’t. Go into his groin area? For what?”
Stavropolous has filed a federal lawsuit against TSA, which refused to comment:
Lack of comment should not be construed as agreement or stipulation with any of the allegations. In DHS’s homeland security mission, our trained officers adhere to the Department’s mission, uphold our laws while couing to provide our nation with safety and security.
The ACLU noted in February that the TSA’s own program is ineffective based on more than 12,000 pages of TSA reports, reported the Los Angeles Times.
“The records include numerous academic studies and articles that directly undermine the premise of the program,” the ACLU said. “The scientific literature in the TSA’s own files reinforces that deception detection is inherently unreliable.”
The TSA rejected the ACLU’s claims.