Woman Boards Plane After Talking Her Way Past Security
- By Matt Holden
- Aug 06, 2015
A 38-year-old St. Louis woman was taken to a hospital for psychiatric observation on Wednesday after talking her way past airport security and entering the cockpit of a private plane.
The woman had apparently been driving to Lambert-St. Louis International Airport, but ended up East of St. Louis and across the Mississippi River at a small Illinois air strip owned by the Bi-State Development Agency. The agency is a government entity, which operated commuter bus and light rail systems in the area.
When she arrived, around 4 a.m., she walked across the tarmac to a 20-seat Global Express plane that was disabled while it underwent maintenance. The woman, who had luggage packed for a short vacation, expressed interest in traveling to both New York and China. She was familiar with how airplanes are operated, but was not a trained pilot.
The FBI, Homeland Security, federal and local prosecutors, the local fire department, and the bomb squad have all been involved. Officials do not think there are any connections to terrorism, but the situation is being reviewed by local prosecutors, who will determine if criminal charges, possibly including trespassing or burglary, should be filed.
The woman was caught after being seen on security cameras, and quickly surrendered. According to a spokeswoman, “security procedures are in place to prevent unauthorized persons from entering the ramp.” However, since the breach, Detective Sergeant Vito Parisi said that serious changes will be made, and more rigorous oversight will be implemented at the airport.
Matt Holden is an Associate Content Editor for 1105 Media, Inc. He received his MFA and BA in journalism from Ball State University in Muncie, Indiana. He currently writes and edits for Occupational Health & Safety magazine, and Security Today.