This photo released by the TSA shows the mainframe and one of the stuffed animals.
This photo released by the TSA shows the mainframe and one of the stuffed animals.

Law enforcement authorities are investigating after the components of a pistol were found hidden in three stuffed animals as a father and his young child were heading to take a plane out of T.F. Green Airport in Rhode Island.

The clip and another component with another animal.

The discovery was made by Transportation Security Administration officers at about 4:10 p.m. Monday, New England TSA spokeswoman Ann Davis said this afternoon.

“The firearm components were artfully concealed within the stuffed animals,” she said.

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She said the components included the mainframe of a .40-caliber gun, a magazine loaded with two bullets, a firing pin and a slide release lever. The stuffed animals were in the carry-on bag of the child.

She said the screeners notified airport police, who took possession of the firearm components and interviewed the father.

Ultimately, the man and his son were allowed to continue on their Pinnacle Airlines flight to Detroit, though without the gun. Davis did not say why.

“For some specific reasons, the father was allowed to proceed on his flight. Law enforcement was comfortable allowing him to do so,” she said.

She said an investigation of the incident continues.

“From TSA’s perspective, we are proud of our officers and the training that they receive, and we also think that this is a great example of why we need to screen passengers of all ages, including children