Today's Lesson? Be Sure To Grab The Right Bag
Portland Trail Blazers
guard Sebastian Telfair (right) had some explaining to do this
week... to the team, the TSA, and even his girlfriend, after a
handgun was found onboard the team's private jet as it was being
readied for departure from Logan International Airport in Boston
The Associated Press says the loaded gun was found onboard the
plane Saturday, in a pillowcase belonging to Telfair.
"We did sweep the plane and we did find the handgun, and it was
a loaded handgun," said TSA spokeswoman Jennifer Peppin. "Once we
got that we turned it over to the State Police in Boston."
Seems it was all a misunderstanding, though. Telfair told local
authorities the gun belonged to his girlfriend, and he had simply
grabbed the wrong bag in his haste to make the flight to
Authorities confirmed the gun was registered to Samantha
Rodriguez, Telfair's girlfriend of five years.
In a statement on the team's website, the Trail Blazers say
Telfair found the handgun during the trip out to Boston, but he
then hid the gun in his pillowcase and failed to tell anyone, in
hopes the error would go unnoticed.
"[Telfair] has apologized profusely, but he knows he must be
held accountable for his actions," said Trail Blazers President
Steve Patterson. "He will pay the price for his error in judgment
for violating both team and league policy. The organization has
also earned a lesson from this issue and is taking steps to tighten
security for all carry-on items on our team plane."
While the Massachusetts Port Authority says it's unlikely any
charges will be filed against Telfair, the NBA is also reviewing
the matter... as something like does little to help during a
time when the league is still working to recover from last year's
drag-out brawl between fans and players at a game between the
Indiana Pacers and Detroit Pistons.
The news also comes one week after a documentary film
about Telfair's life, "Through The Fire," opened in the Portland
area. The film tells the story of Telfair's senior year in high
school, after which he made the jump to the NBA.