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Boy With Pacemaker Denied Alternate Security Screening

A 9-Year-Old With a Pacemaker Was Held Up at the Airport by 18 TSA Agents

Nine-year-old Chille always goes through alternate screening at the airport because a pacemaker implanted in his heart doesn't allow for him to go through metal detectors. However, last week at Sky Harbor International Airport in Phoenix, AZ, Chille was traveling with his mom, Ali Bergman, when he was refused security screening because TSA allegedly told the pair, "Some terrorist plots use children with pacemakers."

Upon arriving at the airport, Bergman, Chille's scooter, and their four bags passed through security, and instead of the "typical smile and use of the other machine or swiping his hands for explosives," Chille was surrounded by no less than 18 TSA agents and police officers.

After a nightmare experience in which their bags were repeatedly screened and the young boy spent over an hour crying on his mother's lap as he was continually denied alternate screening, Chille wants to make sure that this never happens to another child with a pacemaker.

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"Strangers were literally crying along with Chille, giving me their names and numbers as witnesses 'to this horrific situation!'" Bergman wrote in a post to Facebook outlining the entire ordeal. "They surrounded him! It was terrible! In the end, they . . . said that this wouldn't have happened if Chille would have just submitted to alternate screening of his hands being wiped, which Chille had been BEGGING them to do for over an hour. . . . Chille said, 'They should be fired for treating heart kids like this. They were so mean and lied and wouldn't swipe my hands for over an hour! . . . This needs to go viral to protect other kids!'"

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