Back in July, legendary alt rock singer Morrissey leveled some pretty serious accusations at the TSA following a visit to the San Francisco International Airport. He claimed that while he was participating in a pat-down check following his turn through the body scanner, he was groped and sexually assaulted.
At 2:30 in the afternoon I went through the usual airport security procedure including the stand-up ‘scanner,’ and all was well — no bleeps and nothing unusual.
Before I could gather my belongings from the usual array of trays I was approached by an “airport security officer” who stopped me, crouched before me and groped my penis and testicles. He quickly moved away as an older “airport security officer” approached. “You have just sexually groped this man.”
Now some two and a half months later, Gawker has obtained the security footage recorded during the incident. In the video (which you can watch here), you can see Morrissey act as he describes, going about his business when a TSA officer pulls him aside for an individual check. During this screen, you can see the agent spend some time on his backside, but what is happening is slightly obscured. This is possibly the moment that Morrissey described as when the officer “put his finger down my rear cleavage.”
The moment where the singer alleges the man gropes his genitals while he was on his knees is also in the clip, but it’s difficult to tell what happens given the quality and angle of the footage. Following the allegations earlier this summer, the TSA immediately went to Rolling Stone to deny the accusation, saying they followed “standard operating procedures in the screening of this individual.”
The thing about assault of a sexual nature is that the aggrieved person, rather unfairly, typically has the burden of proof. Well, now that there is some evidence, do we think Morrissey has a legit claim?