A 61-year-old Colorado woman was arrested last week for allegedly groping a TSA agent as she attempted to go through an airport security checkpoint at Phoenix’s Sky Harbor Airport. The woman, Yukari Mihamae, was reportedly “fed up” by the TSA’s new enhanced screening procedures, which allow agents to pat down travelers’ private areas in an attempt to suss out hazardous materials.
In an interview with a local TV station, Mihamae expressed her frustration saying, “I go through this every week, and every week there is some problem.”
According to police reports, Mihamae allegedly grabbed the TSA agent’s left breast, “squeezing and twisting it with both hands without the victim’s permission.”
Mihamae was charged with felony sexual assault, and is denying the charges.
Although there are better ways to protest the enhanced screening procedures, Mihamae’s case struck a chord with travelers. Supporters have created a Facebook group called, Acquit Yukari Mihamae.
One poster questioned Mihamae’s sexual assault charge, saying:
“If what Yukari did was “sexual harassment” then what the TSA is doing is also sexual harassment. Just because the gvt forces you to be sexually harassed if you need to fly doesn’t change that fact. Even if they changed the charge to assault, the equation remains the same. What the TSA is doing is UNCONSTITUTIONAL and WRONG.”
With the summer months upon us and traveling at its height, I wouldn’t be surprised if we see more and more travelers resisting the enhanced security changes.