TSA agents in St. Louis, Missouri, disarmed Rooster Monkburn, a cowboy sock money, of his two-inch toy gun after a woman brought the stuffed monkey through security. Agents said that it posed a threat because it could be confused for a real gun, according to local reports.
“[The agent] said ‘this is a gun,’” said Phyllis May, recounting the experience to fly back to her home in Washington state. “I said no, it’s not a gun it’s a prop for my monkey.”
May, who has a small business selling sock monkeys, was also questioned for bringing the sewing supplies she uses to make the stuffed animals in her carry-on bag. TSA agents told her they would have to confiscate the miniature firearm and call the police, although Washington’s KING-TV reports that the TSA never did call the authorities. May’s sewing supplies were ultimately returned to her.
“Rooster Monkburn has been disarmed so I’m sure everyone on the plane was safe,” May quipped. “I understand [the TSA agent] was doing her job but at some point doesn’t common sense prevail?”
May had named the disarmed monkey Rooster Monkburn after Rooster Cogburn, John Wayne’s character in the film True Grit.