MunichMom

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About MunichMom

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  • Location Trudering, Munich
  • Nationality USA
  • Hometown Hamburg/Pennsylvania/Connecticut
  • Gender Female
  • Interests Mountainbiking, travel, reading, gardening
  1. I still can't believe it, but it's true. Try googling "TSA theft" - it's rampant!   On July 24, I flew MUC->PHL->IND, and was the victim of the classic "distract and grab" teamwork form of theft - and all signs point to the perpetrator as being a TSA employee! Apparently the Phildelphia airport has the distinction of being number nine in the top ten for thefts by TSA employees :-( I'm now in the process of filing a TSA claim and police report.   Here are the details, as I'm including them in my TSA claim (not that I expect any compensation, but I want it to be included in the statistics). Please don't be as naive as I was, and assume that all TSA employees are honest. From now on, I'll do the following: - Take only one or two necklaces and one pair of earrings (AND WEAR THEM) - Lock my purse before sending it through the scanner (it has locking clips) - Never again blindly obey a TSA order that seems illogical, but rather (keeping my hands in the air) ask the reason for the order - Double-check my belongings after scanning for signs of tampering or loss, and count them before leaving the TSA security checkpoint to make sure that nothing is missing. I'll not let the chaos around me distract me while doing this. - If traveling with someone else, we will send one person through the body scanner while the other one puts all the items belonging to both persons through the scanner. The first person can then keep an eye on the possessions while the other one gets the full-body scan.   The claim report I'll submit: Arriving on USAir flight 717 from Munich, Germany and transferring to USAir flight 1508 to Indianapolis on July 24, 2013, I was required to pass through the security checkpoint at the Philadelphia airport. Because I travel somewhat frequently, the routine was familiar: remove shoes, laptop, belt, etc. and place in the plastic tubs to be scanned. One of my items included a small carry-on suitcase containing an empty backpack and my small jewelry pouch. After placing the items in the tubs, I proceeded to the full-body scanner as I was only wearing a white tank top, loosely-knitted bolero top, small bandana, lightweight slacks, socks, plus underwear. Just before I reached the scanner, a male TSA employee yelled that I must remove my see-through knitted bolero top and bandana. I was puzzled because I thought the full-body scanners could easily see through a thin cotton bandana and loosely knitted bolero top. However, I immediately obediently obeyed his order and held my see-through knitted top and bandana for him to place in a bin and scan. He informed me that I must put the items in a plastic tub and send it through the scanner. I waited several moments, standing there holding these clothing items, thinking that he would hand me a plastic tub. A female TSA employee then scolded me for not proceeding into the scanner. Standing there with contradictory orders from two TSA employees, I politely told her that the other TSA employee had ordered me to remove these clothing items. Upon hearing this, she threw up her hands in exasperation and said ok, put them through the scanner. The male TSA employee then handed me a plastic tub and sent the clothing items through the scanner. In the meantime, the female employee came over to stand in front of me. I assumed she wanted to scan me with her wand before sending me into the full-body scanner, so I raised my sleeveless top slightly to show her that I wasn't wearing a belt of any kind. She told me to put my top down and proceed into the scanner. In the scanner, the footprints indicate that the person must face AWAY from their possessions. So my valuables were unattended for several more minutes before I could retrieve them. Because it was quite crowded at the checkpoint, I simply stuffed my laptop back into the rolling, carry-on suitcase and proceeded to my gate. I didn't realize it had been stolen until I got to my mother's house. During the flight, the suitcase was in the overhead bin above my head. Upon arrival, it was never out of my sight until I reached my destination (my mother's house). At first, I just assumed that I had left it on the kitchen table at home. That the puzzling incident at the TSA checkpoint could have resulted in the theft of my jewelry never crossed my mind. However, the jewelry pouch wasn't at home, nor at the Munich airport lost&found office, Phildelphia TSA office lost&found, or Philadelphia airport lost&found office. Because the only time it was out of my sight during the entire trip was those minutes at the Phildelphia TSA security checkpoint, I can only conclude that someone stole it there. The only person(s) who knew what was in the carry-on suitcase (and the small fabric pouch it contained holding the jewelry) were the TSA employees. The obvious targets, my purse and laptop, were ignored. The small fabric pouch could easily have been slipped into a trouser pocket.