Whenever I go through a security checkpoint, I keep my eye on my bags. If I am singled out for additional screening, I insist that my bags remain in view while waiting for a TSA employee to turn up.
These waits are the time you’re most likely to be separated from your belongings.
This insistence usually gets a response, in fact it usually limits the time I have to wait for someone to come do the additional screening. And at a minimum declaring that I’m watching closely may serve as a deterrent to theft.
A TSA screener was arrested on Thursday for allegedly stealing cash from a passenger.
While she was patted down, Duddleston told TSA security officer Michelle Metz that she couldn’t see her luggage, so Metz moved her closer.
Duddleston complained again that she couldn’t see her bag, and Johnson moved slightly.
After the pat-down, Duddleston reached for her bag and could not find her money, police said.
She said she noticed a bulge in Johnson’s left front shirt pocket.
Surveillance video showed the screener reaching into the the passenger’s bag, taking money, and putting it into his pocket.
However video doesn’t usually protect us.
- Theft by TSA has been a recurring event for years
- Video isn’t always available, in fact screeners have worked together to make sure their colleagues know when the video is down.
Stealing cash isn’t new. Sometimes they just take cash from passengers they don’t like. The TSA screener who stole a passener’s watch at JFK. Another who turned out to have taken $50,000 worth of items slipped an iPad in their pants.
One TSA screener who admits stealing $800,000 of passenger items explains that workers collaborate, letting each other know when surveillance cameras aren’t working.
Orlando was where a news station tracked down a missing iPad at a TSA agent’s house. The TSA employee blamed his wife.