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Judge Sentences Former Airport Screener

June 6, 2003

RENO, Nev. (AP) _ A former airport screener who concocted a story about a security breach to cover up her drinking on the job was sentenced to two years probation Thursday.

Cheryl Shears was also ordered to pay $100 in court costs by a federal judge after pleading guilty to making a false official statement.

Half of the Reno-Tahoe International Airport was shut down on Nov. 16, 2001, after Shears claimed she had been threatened by a man with a knife and a gun.

Shears first told investigators she got a double vodka at a bar before reporting the incident because she was frightened, but then admitted making up the story.

Shears was an employee of a company hired by Southwest Airlines to conduct pre-boarding searches of passengers and their carry-on luggage.

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