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Serial Stowaway Marilyn Hartman: Why'd They Let Me?

Marilyn Jean Hartman, 62, has been arrested three times in August for boarding planes or loitering in airports without a boarding pass.

A 62-year-old woman with a history of sneaking aboard planes — she was arrested three times in August alone for boarding planes or loitering in airports without a ticket — said Thursday from an Arizona jailhouse that she suffers from a mental illness and depression and blamed authorities for letting her slip by so many times.

Marilyn Jean Hartman clamed that she has an unrecognized illness called "whistleblower trauma syndrome," and as a whistleblower, was forced by the FBI to flee her house, rendering her homeless.

"Why has the government allowed me to get past security points until I forced the issue back in February and pretty much had to beg to be arrested," Hartman told reporters.

Hartman was arrested on Aug. 4 for stowing away on a flight from San Jose to Los Angeles and then again days later for wandering through terminals at LAX without a boarding pass. Hartman was arrested again on Tuesday when she was spotted near a baggage claim area at Sky Harbor International Airport in Phoenix. Hartman pulled similar stunts in February and July, according to The Associated Press and NBC Southern California. Phoenix police are pursuing a medical evaluation for Hartman but cannot demand one without a court order, according to NBC affiliate KPNX.


— Elisha Fieldstadt