Phyllis May's gun-slinging sock monkey gets his tiny toy gun seized by the TSA at St. Louis airport

They are sock monkeys like you've never seen them.

Phyllis May's hobby of creating these elaborate creatures got her into trouble last week.

One monkey in particular, Rooster Monkburn is her take on John Wayne's Rooster Cogburn character from True Grit.

Rooster Monkburn was equipped like the character with his own two-inch toy gun.

She was carrying him in a bag through the security checkpoint at the St. Louis airport when the monkey business began.

While the cylinder pops out, the barrel is solid and can't fire a projectile.

Yet the TSA says any realist replicas of a firearm is prohibited.

May recalls, "Then she said if I held it up to your neck, you wouldn't know if it was real or not. And I said oh really?"

What happened next was short of a showdown.

May continued, "And then she said I have to call the police, and I said call the police. And I was prepared to tell my husband they were going to haul me down and frisk me, which is probably more action than I've seen in a while, but..."

Fortunately it didn't come to that.

May surrendered her weapon.

But her husband couldn't help venting on Facebook.

May knows next time to pack the toy gun in the checked luggage.

"I'm a person who follows the rules, and if those are the rules, that's fine," said May.

The TSA issued a statement, saying, "TSA officers are dedicated to keeping the nation's transportation security systems safe and secure for the traveling public. Under longstanding aircraft security policy, and out of an abundance of caution, realistic replicas of firearms are prohibited in carry-on bags."


Comments