A 9-year-old boy who caught a flight from Minneapolis to Las Vegas without a ticket had previously been arrested for stealing a car.
The apparent ease with which the boy, who is from Minneapolis, was able to get through security and onto a flight on Thursday raised questions about airport and airline security.
The boy is the son of a woman who works at the airport and county child-protection staff have reviewed his family situation four times since December, according to an email from the director of Hennepin County’s Human Services and Public Health Department, which was obtained by the Minneapolis Star-Tribune newspaper.
The email outlines a history of challenging behaviour and a fascination with theft and joyriding.
It notes that the boy stole a car two weeks ago and was arrested on a highway, the newspaper said. The newspaper says the email does not mention where he was arrested or whether he was driving at the time.
The boy was also seen at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport on Wednesday, and a day earlier, a delivery truck was taken from the parking lot of United Noodles Wholesale near downtown Minneapolis by a young boy who was caught on camera, according to Fox 9 News.
“It looks like he was having fun in our parking lot,” Mei Dang, of United Noodles, told Fox News.
The automatic truck had the keys inside, and video shows the boy hopping in and quickly figuring out how to drive it.
“I would say less than three minutes and he was out,” Dang estimated. “He headed out to downtown.”
The boy’s dangerous joyride included a crash with a police cruiser after an officer used a squad car to block the intersection in an attempt to stop him.
A day later, the boy got through security at the airport without a boarding pass and boarded a Delta Airlines flight. His status was not discovered by flight crew until the airplane was in flight, authorities say.
Las Vegas police took the boy into custody when the airplane landed and the incident is under review. He will not face charges on the incidents because of his age, police said.
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