9-year-old runaway boards plane at Minneapolis airport without ticket
MINNEAPOLIS — A 9-year-old Minneapolis runaway went through security and boarded a plane at the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport without a ticket, an airport spokesman said on Sunday.
Security officials screened the boy at the airport shortly after 10:30 a.m. Thursday when he arrived via light rail, Metropolitan Airports Commission spokesman Patrick Hogan said. The boy boarded a Delta flight that left for Las Vegas at 11:15 a.m.
The flight was not full, Hogan said, and the flight crew became suspicious midflight because the boy was not on a list of unattended minors. The crew contacted Las Vegas police, who met them upon landing and transferred the boy to child protection services, Hogan said.
“It's hard to piece anything together from his stories why he got on the flight and went to Las Vegas,” Hogan said.
Minneapolis police Sgt. Bill Palmer said officers talked to the family once Las Vegas police contacted them. A family member told police the boy ran away and was last seen earlier Thursday.
The boy had been at the airport on Wednesday as well, Hogan said. Video shows him grabbing a bag from the carousel and ordering lunch at a restaurant outside of the security checkpoints. He ate and then told the server he had to use the bathroom, Hogan said, left the bag and never returned to pay. Airport officials returned the bag to its owner.
Delta and the Transportation Security Administration said in separate statements that they were investigating.
The Hennepin County Child Protection Services is investigating, Palmer said. County spokeswoman Carolyn Marinan said she couldn't confirm or deny their involvement because the case involves a juvenile and data privacy issues.
The boy was expected to return to the Twin Cities, but Hogan didn't know Sunday if that had happened yet.
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments â either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.