Local News

2 RDU Baggage Handlers Charged in Thefts

Posted December 11, 2007 2:21 p.m. EST
Updated December 11, 2007 8:44 p.m. EST

— Two Raleigh men who load bags for Northwest Airlines at Raleigh-Durham International Airport have been charged with thefts from passengers' luggage, authorities said.

Derrick Mitchell, 24, of 4417 Woodlawn Drive, was charged with larceny in connection with the theft of a portable navigation system valued at $1,076 from one passenger and purse containing about $13 in coins and $10 in bills from a second traveler. James Waker, 27, of 909 Navajo Drive, was charged with aiding and abetting felony larceny.

Both men work for Swissport USA at RDU.

Airport police receive a few reports of merchandise stolen from luggage each month, and officers are reviewing those to determine whether any more charges are warranted in the case, RDU spokeswoman Mindy Hamlin said.

"They will look at past reports of stolen property. They will talk to the airlines, to the Transportation Security Administration and see if there is a pattern – to see if this is something that was going on before it was reported (Monday)," Hamlin said.

RDU officials recommended that airline passengers keep anything of value with them in their carry-on luggage to make sure it isn't misplaced or stolen.