Travel is a hassle for an 8-year-old Cub Scout from New Jersey.
That's because Mikey Hicks shares the same name of a person who has drawn the suspicion of the Homeland Security Department.
His mother tells The New York Timesshe sensed trouble when her son was a baby and she couldn't get a seat for him at a Florida airport. She says airline officials explained his name "was on the list."
He was patted down as a 2-year-old at Newark Liberty International Airport.
The Times said that after years of long delays and waits for supervisors at every airport ticket counter, this year’s vacation to the Bahamas badly shook up the family. Mikey was frisked on the way there and more aggressively on the way home.
“Up your arms, down your arms, up your crotch — someone is patting your 8-year-old down like he’s a criminal,” Mrs. Hicks told the newspaper. “A terrorist can blow his underwear up and they don’t catch him. But my 8-year-old can’t walk through security without being frisked.”
The newspaper says the boy's name appears to be among 13,500 on the "selectee" list, which sets off a high level of security screening. At some point, someone named Michael Hicks made homeland security officials suspicious, and little Mikey is still paying the price.
Transportation Security Administration spokesman James Fotenos says in the coming months, the agency will cross-check names with birth dates and gender. He told the Times there are no children on the "no-fly" list, but would not comment on questions about Mikey.