Mom Claims Son With Pacemaker Was Hassled by TSA: 'Could You Please Just Do Your Job?'
A Minnesota mom is furious after she says she and her young son were surrounded by multiple police officers and TSA agents all because her son has a pacemaker.
Ali Bergstrom and her 9-year-old son Chille were boarding a flight in Phoenix to fly back home to Wyoming Saturday when she says they were surrounded by TSA agents.
“What happened on Saturday morning was a nightmare,” she told Inside Edition. “There's absolutely no reason to harass and bully a young child because of his disability."
Chille was born with multiple heart defects — requiring 15 open heart surgeries during his short life. The pacemaker keeps the boy alive.
The youngster, who wants to be a pilot, is an avid traveler and usually asks for an alternative screening at TSA.
The distraught mother claims she was asking for her son to be screened with his hands to be swiped or by going through a scanner with his hands raised. These are allowed by the TSA.
She claims: "We were met immediately with an agent who said that my son was not eligible to be screened by the TSA and instead we need an exemption. She said because he has a pacemaker. The entire party would need to be screened repeatedly."
The TSA said they followed standard procedures.
“We were eventually allowed to board our flight,” Ali said. “It took over an hour after we were surrounded and bullied and harassed by over 18 TSA agents who also brought with them four phoenix police officers.”
The little boy chimed in and said: "If I could say anything to the TSA, it would be, could you please just do your job?"
In a statement to Inside Edition, the TSA said: "TSA is committed to ensuring all travelers are treated with respect and courtesy. We conducted a thorough review of the incident and determined that the family was screened in accordance with our procedures. TSA officials are in contact with the family for feedback and support.
"The family was not denied boarding by TSA. They were escorted, after completing screening, to their gate by airline representatives."
TSA is on high alert as more and more children are being used in terrorist plots.
On Monday, police in Iraq caught a boy with a suicide belt around his waist. This child was apprehended before he could detonate the bomb.
In addition, reports out of Turkey claim a teenager was behind the bombing of a wedding in the southern part of the country over the weekend, killing 54 people.