‘Serial Stowaway’ Marilyn Hartman Arrested at Chicago Airport

October 14, 2019 Updated: October 14, 2019

An elderly woman who previously sneaked onto several passenger flights faces felony charges after attempting to board a plane with no travel documents, according to the Chicago Tribune.

Marilyn Hartman, 67, dubbed the “serial stowaway,” was arrested on Oct. 11 as she attempted to make her way through the second of two security checkpoints at Chicago O’Hare International Airport.

She was taken into custody and charged with a felony count of criminal trespass for the incident.

The Tribune states that she did not have a boarding pass or ID with her at the checkpoint, which is closed off to people without proof of travel.

When a Transportation Security Administration officer asked Hartman for documentation, she reportedly told the agent that she didn’t need it and walked away.

The publication said that Hartman positively identified herself to police when they arrived and gave them a state ID before she was detained.

Hartman appeared in court on Oct. 13, where Cook County Judge Arthurs Willis granted her a personal recognizance bail but ordered she stay in custody until a related probation hearing.

He added that he allowed her release so that she can receive court and health services to prevent such an incident from occurring again. However, her bail will only be granted if her previous judge allows it.

Hartman—who according to her court-appointed attorney is currently homeless—has previously received media coverage for her sometimes successful attempts at illegally accessing airports and boarding flight.

She was given probation earlier this year after sneaking onto a flight from O’Hare to London without a ticket in 2018.

After being caught in London, she pleaded guilty to criminal trespassing, was given 18 months probation, and agreed to stay away from Chicago’s two commercial airports.

However, just two days after the incident occurred, Hartman went back to Chicago O’Hare International Airport and was taken into custody when she refused to leave the premises.

According to the publication, she has been arrested for 20 airport incidents throughout the United States from 2014 to January 2018.

The first incident took place on Feb. 15, 2014, at San Francisco International Airport, and she is believed to have repeated her stowaway attempts at airports in Los Angeles, Chicago, Arizona, and Minnesota.

Judge Arthurs Willis said that Hartman will be fitted with an electric monitor and banned from O’Hare and Midway airports if she is released.

She is now expected to appear before a judge at the Skokie courthouse on Oct. 18.

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