More airport luggage theft

Airport luggage theft: Sabrina Zotter, alleged luggage thief in Phoenix
Sabrina Zotter, alleged luggage thief in Phoenix

Imagine the post office delivering your mail to a big open heap, mixed with the envelopes and boxes of 300 strangers. The honor-based system would have you pawing through the pile and taking just what’s yours. No one would guard the items; no one would check who took what.

Why not? The airlines do it. Nowadays, we even pay for that flawed, partial delivery system.

Airport luggage theft

Theft of luggage from airport baggage carousels is too easy. Yet another bag thief has been arrested for stealing luggage out of Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport. Excuse me—”suspected” bag thief. Phoenix Police say she’s been under surveillance since last September. I’m sure Zotter’s not the only baggage thief operating. Neither is Phoenix the only airport we need to worry about, though it may be particularly easy for thieves.

I wrote about luggage theft at Las Vegas McCarran Airport here, and about European and African airport thieves here.

Thief “JD” only pretends to steal luggage at baggage carousels. That’s his way of distracting tired travelers in order to get their wallets. “Right now, I can go to McCarran airport and go to baggage claim and beat some stings,” he says. “Because security is, evidently, lax, and the people are rushing to get their bags, and the bags are coming off the trolley. And when he’s stooping down to get his luggage— …˜Oh, is that mine, sir?’ Shake him up. …˜Oh, is this mine? It looks like mine.’ If you’re moving, and I got someone with me, and you’re in the airport, I’m going to play you. If I feel like I can work you I’m going to play you.”

I fly into Phoenix frequently, and into Las Vegas several times a month. Since bag tag checkers were removed ages ago, I’ve never seen any security at either airport.

Airlines are blamed for a tremendous amount of lost luggage. How often are they, too, the victims of these baggage thieves? It would be in their interest to band together and pay for a little security at the baggage carousels.

Airport luggage theft: airport baggage carousel
© Copyright 2008-2010 Bambi Vincent. All rights reserved.

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