Video of TSA Screening Toddler Goes Viral

Episode happened before the TSA changed guidelines for child screening

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    NEWSLETTERS

    A two year old video posted to YouTube over the weekend conjured up raw emotions from the father who could only watch as a Transportation Security Administration official swabbed his wheelchair-bound son for explosives. Matt DuBiel said he rediscovered the clip of his then-3-year-old son, Rocco, while looking over old family videos with his oldest son. (Published Monday, Mar 19, 2012)

    A two year old video posted to YouTube over the weekend conjured up raw emotions from the father who could only watch as a Transportation Security Administration official swabbed his wheelchair-bound son for explosives.

    "I'm pretty angry," Matt DuBiel recalled Monday as he watched the video again. "I start talking to my wife and I noticed he's shaking."

    The incident happened at Midway International Airport during the spring of 2010, he said. DuBiel said he rediscovered the clip of his then-3-year-old son, Rocco, while looking over old family videos with his oldest son.

    DuBiel said he was troubled explaining to his son that he stood there and watched a TSA employee swab his younger brother's legs, arms, even his bare back for more than three minutes.

    "My biggest problem with this experience is looking him in the eye and telling him that this sort of thing is OK," DuBiel said. "And this is no big deal. And that's the part I regret."

    This episode happened before the TSA changed guidelines for child screenings.

    "The new modified screening measures have greatly reduced, though not eliminated, pat-downs of children," the TSA said in a statement. "While recognizing that terrorists are willing to manipulate societal norms to evade detection, our officers continue to work with parents to ensure a respectful screening process for the entire family at the checkpoint."

    DuBiel said he doesn't fault the employee heard on the video talking with Rocco, saying he was just following protocol.

    The TSA said the boy was given extra attention because his wheelchair couldn't pass through the metal detector.

    DeBiel said the most troubling part of his experience was having to wheel his son to that screening area. By doing so, he said he went around security and doesn't remember walking through metal detectors or imaging devices himself.