TSA forces wheelchair-bound, 95-year-old woman dying of cancer to remove adult diaper

Published On June 26, 2011 | By Dr. Q | Articles

Last weekend, Lena Reppert, a wheelchair-bound, 95-year old woman suffering from a terminal case of leukemia arrived at the Northwest Florida Regional Airport to board a flight to Michigan where she planned to spend time with her family before she passes away. When she arrived at the TSA checkpoint in the airport, TSA agents brought her to a glass partition where they subjected her to one of their infamous pat-down searches. After completing the pat-down, the TSA agents still weren’t convinced that the elderly woman wasn’t a terrorist, so they brought her to a private room to subject her to a more invasive search. During the search, the TSA agents ordered her to remove an adult diaper she was wearing, claiming that it was impeding their ability to search her. The search took approximately 45 minutes.

The woman’s daughter, Jean Weber, filed a complaint with the TSA about the incident and was allegedly told that the TSA agents followed the proper procedures for conducting a search.

According to Sari Koshetz, a TSA spokeswoman, “TSA cannot exempt any group from screening because we know from intelligence that there are terrorists out there that would then exploit that vulnerability.”

Do you feel safer now?

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About The Author

Dr. Q is a police accountability activist who resides in Massachusetts. He is the founder and editor of Massachusetts Cop Block. He is also the creator of the War on Cameras Map. You can connect with him on Twitter.
  • Dude

    Of course I feel safer! Those violent liberal islamic extremists might strap bombs to my grandmother’s wheelchair and hope that the TSA agents (god bless them for all they do) might overlook her since she’s old. The TSA needs to do cavity searches on everyone, even if they’re 95 years old! What? She has a terminal disease? Even more reason to search her! She might be disgruntled and want to blow up an airplane before she goes just for spits and giggles. TSA agents for the win!

    Or I could be an unbrainwashed human and think that this is just disgusting and feel like the daughter should have fought for her mother’s rights, pride, and dignity. Who stands by and willingly lets their loved ones be stripped down and humiliated by someone with a name tag and a badge?

  • http://www.facebook.com/pages/Scary-Cat-Music/234648719895325 Harriet

    THIS IS WHAT A POLICE STATE LOOKS LIKE!

  • Cindy

    Last week I got pulled into the back scatter scanner line, I was sure I would opt out, but it had been a difficult week and I needed to be home for obligations,,,, so I agreed to scan even though I am soooooooo against it. I heard the machine and when the noise stopped I moved, that is when the TSA moved in. They were hostile, I had to go through pat down because I moved during scan, I could not touch any of my stuff and the tone was hostile by both. I did get a resonable time and the pat down was not so invasive as I have heard others say. However I was required to leave name and passport info. I was in a daze after as I thought how close this was to historical events i have read. How being detained for no reason can easily turn into something far worse. The thought that I am at the mercy of angry TSA agents and if I go one thing wrong ( I mean wrong to them) where can I end up? in prison? beaten? detained.. I don’t know but it felt very scary indeed.

  • Heather Sullivan

    I WILL NEVER FLY AGAIN!

  • EPhil

    I’ll be flying next month–international to Philly—really not looking forward to the trip, I’m also in a wheelchair, so tired of being groped, used to just be ‘I’m just going to use the back of my hand crap….’ I know what I’d like to do with the back of my hand, or actually I’d prefer a bit more emphasis. If there wasn’t such an outstanding doctor in Brooklyn, I wouldn’t be flying.

    What I find more disturbing is the comments that this story received in the old media—many found nothing wrong with TSA’s actions and rather criticized the daughter for not having extra depends to change her. Where is she supposed to change an adult’s diaper? on the floor?? even if it was soiled (probably wet), there aren’t adult changing stations and many adults wear more complicated clothes over top—like pantyhose? The criticisms were overwhelmingly of the daughter, not the TSA. I’m glad I don’t live in the US anymore.

  • Samuel Brown

    I don’t understand why everyone just sits around and does nothing to physically stop these idiots??

    If enough of us with a backbone would suffer for the sake of “righteousness” maybe we could wake up America………..?

  • UDTSealCap

    @Samuel Brown

    What have you done?
    Have you stood up to those idiots?
    How is your backbone?
    Lastly,
    how much did you suffer for righteousness?

    Lead the way my friend. You be the first to get arrested. I’m sure some of us will follow suit.

    Instead of wondering why no one is doing anything and complaining about how no one will step up why not be THE ONE to step up?

    You can complain all day but until you do something to change whats going on, you’re no better than anyone else.

  • Elan

    This and Cindy’s story really worry me. I was never scared to fly because of terrorists and yet now I’m scared to fly because of TSA agents. I guess the terrorists won.

  • http://Yahoo.com Ray

    In over 30 years,as a law enforcement agent,this one of the most unheard abuses of power,I know of…These rent-a-cops,need to be trained as all proffesional law enforcement officers are trained..I have searched several hundred,suspects..If were to fly anywhere,now,and my wife or I ,were treated this way,some T.S.A rent- a-cop would find them selves with more trouble,than they could ever hope to ever resolve…