Two TSA agents suspended after noose found in baggage area of Miami airport

The Transportation Security Administration said in a statement that it "does not tolerate racist or offensive behavior."
New 3-D Explosives Scanner Installed At TSA Checkpoint At Miami Airport
A Transportation Security Administration agent at the Miami International Airport.Joe Raedle / Getty Images file

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By Jay Blackman and Minyvonne Burke

Two Transportation Security Administration officers were placed on leave for putting up a noose in a baggage screening area at Miami International Airport, government sources said.

The agency announced the suspensions in a statement Tuesday saying that an "offensive display" was discovered in an area not accessible to the public.

A photo of the noose posted on Instagram showed it hanging from the ceiling with two stuffed monkeys attached.

"The display was immediately removed and an investigation was launched into who was responsible for the unacceptable behavior," the TSA statement read.

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"TSA does not tolerate racist or offensive behavior and those found responsible will be held accountable for their actions," the agency said.

The officers were placed on leave as the incident is investigated, the TSA said. Their identities were not revealed.

Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos Giménez said he was glad the TSA took quick action and suspended the officers.

"Although TSA workers are not employees of Miami-Dade, #OurCounty has zero tolerance for racism," he said in a tweet.

In recent months, there have been a number of workers who have reported finding racist objects at their places of employment.

In March, more than a dozen black workers at a UPS distribution center in Maumee, Ohio, sued the distributor and several employees after finding nooses and Confederate flags in the office.

An African American man who works as a quality inspector at Boeing's plant in North Charleston, South Carolina, sued the company in June after he said his white co-workers hung a noose above his desk.

And in a similar incident, five educators at Summerwind Elementary School in Palmdale, California, were suspended in May after a photo showed four teachers posing with a rope fashioned into a noose.

The teachers as well as the school's principal, who emailed the photo to Summerwind staff, were placed on administrative leave as the incident was investigated, the district superintendent said.