UPDATE: Man charged in Louisville airport security breach had weapon in his bag

The suspect was found aboard a Southwest flight heading to Chicago.
Published: Sep. 24, 2023 at 9:42 AM EDT|Updated: Sep. 25, 2023 at 12:01 PM EDT

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - A Southern Indiana man was arrested after a breach in security at the Louisville Muhammad Ali International Airport (SDF) Sunday morning.

Around 6:30 a.m., SDF said an individual breached the TSA security checkpoint during the screening process. The airport’s Public Safety and Airport Operations departments were able to find the man on Southwest Airlines flight 3732 to Chicago-Midway as it was boarding.

Louisville Airport police arrested Michael Phillip Van Bree, 60, of Greenville, Ind., on a misdemeanor charge of carrying a concealed deadly weapon.

Court documents say Van Bree was going through the TSA checkpoint when a gun was detected in one of his bags. A TSA agent said Van Bree grabbed both of his bags from the belt and walked into the secured gate area of the terminal.

Because of the security breach, a ground stop was issued for all planes at SDF.

A review of security camera video showed Van Bree boarding the Southwest flight. Airport police removed all passengers from the aircraft and detained Van Bree without incident. The weapon, a Smith and Wesson MP40, was found during a search of Van Bree’s backpack.

Natalie Chaudoin, an SDF spokesperson, said passenger screening and departing flight operations resumed as normal around 7:45 a.m. Chaudoin said the rescreening of passengers is standard procedure anytime any aircraft are removed from a plane due to security reasons.

Van Bree was booked into Louisville Metro Corrections following his arrest but has been released after posting a $10,000 cash bond. Arraignment is scheduled for Sept. 27 in Jefferson District Court.