I-Team: Confronting city leaders about Hopkins International Airport security gap

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CLEVELAND- The FOX 8 I-TEAM today put the Airport Director and the head of the City Council Transportation Committee on the spot about a security gap we exposed last week at Cleveland Hopkins Airport.

We revealed a suspected drunk driver crashed through a fence in the wee hours of the morning, drove onto the airfield, and stayed in a restricted area for 55 minutes until a private security guard finally spotted him. Airport security was unaware of what had happened.

The I-TEAM found Airport Director Robert Kennedy at City Hall and asked what would he say to members of the public to convince them the same thing wouldn’t happen again?

Kennedy first tried to refer us to City Hall public relations staff by saying, “Ed, we’ve said this before, just because you want the question asked, doesn’t mean I have to respond at this point.”

However, he also said, “We’re going through an investigation on this along with TSA (Transportation Security Administration) and along with the FBI on this, so….”

We also went up to Councilwoman Phyllis Cleveland. She said she had no comment. When we reminded her that she heads the Transportation Committee, we got the same answer.

So how did the security breach happen? The I-TEAM is waiting for the Cleveland Law Department to release records. Those records we requested last week. They include records that will show how the call came in, how it was handled, and maybe, how no one noticed anything for so long.

Meantime, we keep coming back to what all of this means to you and your loved ones.

Kennedy said, “We will continue to look for ways to improve. Always.”

The TSA is waiting for the City to finish its investigation. Then, the TSA will review the findings and possibly recommend changes to Hopkins Airport security.

No timetable has been announced for the investigation.

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