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    No Passport or Ticket: How a Woman Evaded Airport Security and Flew to London

    With neither a ticket nor a passport, Marilyn Hartman slipped into Chicago O’Hare International Airport last week, sneaked onto a British Airways flight and traveled to London, where she was apprehended by customs officials, the Chicago Police Department said in a news release.
    How did she do it? By hiding in plain sight.
    Ms. Hartman, 66, of Grayslake, Ill., about 50 miles north of Chicago, entered O’Hare on Jan. 14, the police said.
    Airport surveillance video showed her moving through O’Hare without a boarding pass or passport, officials said.
    First, she walked past two Transportation Security Administration officers while they were checking the boarding passes of other passengers, Tandra R. Simonton, a spokeswoman for the Cook County State’s Attorney, said in a phone interview on Sunday.
    “She hid her face with her hair and walked past the officers without presenting proper documentation to board a flight,” Ms. Simonton said.
    After Ms. Hartman joined the security line and was screened by the T.S.A., she tried to board a flight to Connecticut around 2 p.m., attempting to conceal herself behind a passenger who was waiting in line, Ms. Simonton said. As Ms. Hartman tried to dart past the passenger, the gate agent stopped her, and directed her to sit down, Ms. Simonton said.
    Prosecutors said Ms. Hartman stayed overnight at the airport, and the next day she approached a shuttle bus headed for the international gate.
    “This shuttle requires a passport and plane ticket to board,” Ms. Simonton said, but despite having neither document, Ms. Hartman boarded the shuttle.
    According to the police, she then got on a flight that landed at Heathrow Airport in London, where she was detained by British customs officials and denied entry into the United Kingdom. When she arrived in the United States on Thursday, she was charged with one felony count of theft and one misdemeanor for trespassing.
    Ms. Hartman’s court-appointed lawyer could not be reached for comment on Sunday.
    At a hearing on Saturday, Judge Stephanie K. Miller ordered Ms. Hartman released on her own recognizance on the condition that she received psychiatric help, stayed away from O’Hare and British Airways and wore an ankle monitor until her case was concluded, The Chicago Tribune reported.
    Ms. Hartman was at the Cook County Jail because she did not have a place to stay in Cook County, which was a requirement for the electronic monitoring, Sophia Ansari, the press secretary for the Cook County Sheriff’s Office, said.
    nytimes.com