Serial stowaway is caught again

Javier Stokes
January 31, 2018

After she was arrested yet again earlier this month in Chicago for boarding a plane without a ticket, "serial stowaway" Marilyn Hartman was ordered by a Cook County judge to wear an ankle monitor.

Police spotted her while responding to a call of someone refusing to leave the airport.

Hartman, who had been attempting to get on flights without tickets at least since 2014, caught a shuttle bus to the worldwide terminal and slept there overnight, prosecutor said.

She was also arrested two times in 2015 within two months at O'Hare and Chicago's Midway Airport. She'll remain in custody until her next court date on January 31.

NBC reported that Hartman was released from custody Thursday even though the county sheriff's office protested the move. Rebuffed in that attempt, she boarded a secure airport shuttle bus without the required passport or ticket, spent the night in the airport and managed to board a British Airways flight to London.

Hartman, who once told her public defender she grew up in Chicago and went to Chicago Vocational School but has no family and has lived in shelters in the city, claims she feels airports are safer then living on the street.

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"Can you stay away from the airports?" the judge asked Hartman in court, to which she replied: "Yes - yes, Your Honor".

Once on the plane, flight attendants realized she didn't have a ticket and alerted authorities.

But Hartman could not get by a Heathrow customs agent who flagged her for not having proper documentation, McCarthy said, per the Tribune. On other occasions, she was arrested after raising suspicions by loitering in terminals without a boarding pass.

The TSA is investigating how Hartman was able to get through security.

Hartman's history of stowing away on airplanes dates back to at least 2014, when she attempted to sneak onto four different flights to Hawaii from San Francisco International Airport.

Hartman was given probation when she was sentenced after pleading guilty in a February 2016 trespassing charge, but she was sentenced to 364 days in jail a few weeks later, according to court records. She had been placed on house arrest at the Margaret Manor mental health facility that year.

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