Man locked Up in Airport Cell after Tried to File a Complaint

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( — February 6, 2015)  — Philadelphia, PA – Architect and runner Roger Vanderklok said he was left 20 hours in a holding cell at the Philadelphia International Airport, without a phone call or police intervention. He claims he was detained because he intended to complain of a search officer about his conduct while searching. In addition, he accuses the TSA supervisor of lying to the police and lying in court.

“It’s difficult to lose control of your existence. That’s what it amounts to,” Vanderklok said Wednesday. “I was absolutely terrified.”

According to Vanderklok, he was on his way to Miami for a half-marathon. at the security check point Vanderklok said TSA supervisor disrespectfully searched his bag and he asked the officer how to file the complaint. Vanderklok claims that the TSA officer lied to the security officers saying he became aggressive.

The TSA officer said the 58-year-old runner had made a verbal threat during the January 2013 security check at the Philadelphia International Airport, after which security officers escorted to the holding cell to wait for authorities. Vanderklok said they denied him a phone call so he couldn’t phone to his wife and say what is going on. When the police finally showed up after 20 hours in the cell, Vanderklok was charged according to the TSA officer statement.

Reportedly, the TSA was concerned about the gear in his bag: what turned out to be a watch and power bars, wrapped in a small PVC pipe for protection. According to TSA Supervisor Charles Kieser testimony, electronics and organic mass can be used to make bombs.

Vanderklok’s lawyer, Thomas Malone, disputed the Kieser claims in court: “I don’t think PowerBars are consistent with bombings, nor are watches.”

According to court documents, Kieser said Vanderklok was actually arrested when he threatened to bring a bomb whenever he wants to, and security officers would never find it. Vanderklok, however, insisted that he never said anything about a bomb.

A judge dismissed the threat charges against Vanderklok, however, he filed his lawsuit Jan. 23, seeking unspecified damages for what he considers a retaliatory arrest.

Vanderklok does not challenge the TSA’s effort to investigate the suspicious items, Vanderkok’s lawyer said, however, he said TSA officer Kieser lied, referring to the airport security footages that contradict Kieser’s testimony.

The security video shows Vanderklok standing calmly with his arms in front of him holding a laptop, his lawsuit says.