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Woman who stowed away on flight from San Jose arrested again at Los Angeles airport

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LOS ANGELES, Calif. - A woman who flew from San Jose to Los Angeles without a boarding pass and has made repeated attempts to sneak aboard flights was arrested again Thursday at Los Angeles International Airport after wandering through terminals without an airline ticket, authorities said.

Marilyn Jean Hartman, 62, was taken into custody a day after a judge had ordered her to stay away from LAX unless she had a paid ticket, airport Police Chief Patrick Gannon said.

Hartman took a morning FlyAway shuttle bus from downtown's Union Station to the airport. Gannon said he had a feeling Hartman was going to come back to LAX without a valid ticket, so police had passed out fliers with pictures of her to airport police officers and staff.

"She was seen wandering through several terminals today in what appeared to be a scouting mission," he said.

Hartman was arrested for violating terms of her 24-month probation, which was issued Wednesday after she pleaded no contest to a misdemeanour count of wilfully and unlawfully entering the city as a stowaway on an aircraft.

When she left court, Hartman said she would never try to sneak onto a plane again. "It was stupid, and it is something I don't want to repeat," she said.

Hartman was being held on $10,000 bail. A court hearing will be set on Monday.

It was unclear what charges she could face after Thursday's arrest. Los Angeles city attorney spokesman Frank Mateljan said officials plan to review the police report while she is in custody.

A call to her attorney, Elsie Wanton, was not immediately returned.

Hartman had recently left mental health treatment that she had been ordered to attend and said homelessness drove her to take "desperate measures." She said she feels safer being in airports than in the streets.

On Monday, Hartman had tried at least three times to get to a plane before she finally went past a security screener who was busy checking a family's documents at Mineta San Jose International Airport, according to law enforcement officials. They would speak only on condition of anonymity because the security breach is being investigated.

Hartman then went through the electronic screening process before entering an airport terminal.

Her boarding status was discovered once Southwest Airlines Flight 3785 landed in Los Angeles, the officials said.

Her breach of security caused federal officials and the airline to launch investigations. It also prompted criticism of San Jose's airport in light of the trespassing of a teenage boy who stowed away in the wheel well of a Hawaiian Airlines flight and survived the arduous journey to Maui.

In February, Hartman was sentenced to 18 months' probation in San Mateo County after being arrested for attempting to board three Hawaii-bound flights at the San Francisco International Airport on three separate days. In November 2010, Hartman made it as far as the airport baggage claim on the Hawaiian island of Kauai before being arrested, the San Francisco Chronicle reported.

Hartman told authorities in the past that she wanted to fly somewhere warm because she had cancer, said Steve Wagstaffe, district attorney for San Mateo County. Hartman had cancer, but she has been in remission for several years, the Chronicle reported.

Authorities placed Hartman in treatment for mental disorders in May but said she stopped attending last month. Wagstaffe said he had no plans to take any additional measures against her.

"She declined all of our efforts to offer her assistance," Wagstaffe said. "And we tried all of the alternatives we had because we weren't interested in locking her up on our end."

___

Collins reported from San Francisco.

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