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UPDATE: Photos of Charlottesville 'Airport Stripper' Released

By: Chris Stover Email
By: Chris Stover Email

January 4, 2011

A police report, obtained by WTVR in Richmond, includes photos of Aaron Tobey shortly after he was taken into custody at Richmond International Airport.

Tobey was arrested at the airport for disorderly conduct Thursday after stripping to running shorts to protest revealing airport body scanners.

The photos show Tobey in his shorts with the Fourth Amendment written across his chest.

To see the photos, click here.

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January 2, 2011

Charlottesville native Aaron Tobey is taking his arrest in stride.

"It's not about me or my actions but more about the issues at hand," Tobey said.

Last week, in protest against revealing airport body scanners, the 21-year-old stripped to his shorts at the security checkpoint at Richmond International Airport. His message is the scanners breach his Fourth Amendment rights.

"Searches at airports are just the beginning, and if we let one thing slip, it's possible other things could," Tobey said.

Tobey was arrested for disorderly conduct and was questioned by federal authorities.

"I had to proclaim repeatedly that I was not a terrorist and that I had no history of mental health issues," Tobey said.

He eventually made his way to Wisconsin for the new year. He told CBS19 he accomplished what he wanted.

"We need to have a dialogue concerning our civil liberties and where we are allowed to express ourselves, where we are allowed to feel safe and secure in our person," he said.

One place where that debate is active is on our webchannel. Tobey responded to comments posted on newsplex.com

Townie wrote, "You should expect some degree of searches in certain instances" that involve safety. Tobey said there are limits.

"It's sort of very presumptuous of the government to treat us all as if we are considering committing a crime," he said.

Former Flier praised Tobey, saying, "We can only hope more people step up for their rights."

"I hope other people talk about this," Tobey said. "I don't necessarily suggest that people do the same thing I did."

Tobey's father stands by his son, telling CBS19 last week, "I'm quite proud of him."

Now, the younger Tobey looks forward to defending himself in court.

"It's more about starting a debate, not about whether my actions were right or wrong," he said.

Tobey will be arraigned in Henrico County Court on the disorderly conduct charge on Jan. 10. Locally-based rights advocacy group, the Rutherford Institute, has offered to represent him.


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