SAN FRANCISCO—Musician Morrissey has laid claims that he was sexually assaulted at San Francisco International Airport on Monday, July 27.

On Wednesday, July 29, the 56-year-old posted a letter to True To You, a fansite he regularly contributes to, which provided a first-hand account of the alleged incident. According to Morrissey, he was routinely passing through a body scanner to catch his British Airways flight to London when a security officer approached and stopped him.

The officer then crouched in front of Morrissey, and proceeded to grope him in his private area. Immediately after a higher seniority employee approached the two, the officer retreated.

Two British Airways were accompanying Morrissey and reportedly witnessed the security officer touch the musician inappropriately.
Two British Airways Special Services employees were accompanying Morrissey and reportedly witnessed the security officer touch the musician inappropriately.

Morrissey later wrote how the officer’s actions were witnessed by to two British Airways employees, who then urged the musician to file a complaint.

They also confronted the accused officer, and the following conversation is said to have proceeded:

[BA Employees] : You have just sexually groped this man.
Officer: That’s just your opinion.
[BA Employees] : What you have done is illegal.
Officer: That’s just your opinion.
[BA Employees] : You have no right to do what you have just done.
Officer: That’s just your opinion.”

The officer was later identified to be the General Manager on Duty.

Before ending his letter, the musician gave a word of caution for anyone passing through security checks at the airport: “…should you find yourself traveling through San Francisco International Airport, you should expect sexual abuse from the so-called ‘security officers’ who, we are unconvincingly warned, are acting only for our security.”

In a response statement sent to Rolling Stone Magazine, the TSA denies the exact incident that was described in Morrissey’s letter took place, stating: “Upon review of closed circuit TV footage, TSA determined that the supervised officer followed standard operating procedures in the screening of this individual.”

Morrissey initially had expressed reluctance to report the incident at all, asserting that “my submitted complaint against this ‘officer’ will obviously be either unread or ignored” in order to protect “imperishable bureaucracy.”

Morrissey has yet to release a statement on the TSA’s preliminary ruling.