"TSA has determined standard procedures were not followed and in fact passed through a standard screening TSA checkpoint with a prior to the Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport on the morning of January 3," the release states.
Delta Airlines also issued a statement to CNN, saying that "upon the customer's disclosure, the airline reported the incident to the TSA."
The security breach came to two weeks into the government shutdown, during which TSA agents were required to work but have not received paychecks. CNN first reported on January 4 – a day after the breach – that hundreds of TSA agents from at least four major airports had called in sick.
However, the TSA dismissed the government shutdown contributed to the security lapse and said A normal amount of staffers were working that day.
"The perception that this might have occurred as a result of the partial government shutdown would be false," TSA said. "The national unscheduled absence rate of TSA staff on Thursday, January 3, 201
TSA screeners have struggled to detect weapons just in the absence of a shutdown. In 2015, the acting administrator for the TSA was reassigned after a report found that airport screeners failed to detect explosives and weapons in almost every test that an undercover team conducted at dozens of airports.
"Security standards will NOT and have NOT been compromised, "said Michael Bilello, TSA assistant administrator for public affairs, on Twitter.
"While I realize this is not what you are doing for your hard work … and what you deserve, these actions are some of the financial hardship many of you are facing, "TSA Administrator David Pekoske wrote.