Creepy messages in your baggage

Date:January 24, 2006 / year-entry #32
Orig Link:
Comments:    19
Summary:Heather Leigh had a creepy experience with her baggage last week. The story continued yesterday. I'm watching to see how things turn out.

Heather Leigh had a creepy experience with her baggage last week. The story continued yesterday. I'm watching to see how things turn out.

Comments (19)
  1. JS says:

    It’s creepy to be sure, but that’s all. I’d say she was over-dramatizing a bit, but maybe she really was that disturbed. Most women I know, if they were in this situation, would basically have a reaction of "Ew, gross", and then they’d toss the note in the trash or possibly prank call the number.

  2. Gabe says:

    The biggest issue here is the the note was on the inside of her bag. Do you like the idea of baggage handlers opening your bags? Since this was checked at the gate, it could have easily been a bag containing valuables like a laptop, a camera, or whatever jewelry she decided to take along. Stupid prank or not, anybody who opens my bag should be fired.

    If I came home to find a note like that on my door, I would laugh as I threw it away. If I came home to find the note on my refrigerator, I would call the police while trying not to disturb the crime scene.

  3. Lance Fisher says:

    That kind of behavior should not be tolerated. Especially since her bag was opened, especially since it was done by an airline employee.

  4. Steve says:

    I don’t think she was over-dramatizing. That is creepy as hell, even to me and I’m a guy.

    One more reason not to fly, as if I needed any. The more airlines that go bankrupt, the happier I am.

  5. Dr Pizza says:

    I just wish people would make me offers like that.

  6. AndyB says:

    Hey, DrPizza.. you’re thinking of supermodels hanging around thinking of your butt.. pity that the only people who’d actually send that kind of note are the kind of illiterate monkeys you only see on movies about serial killers.

    Oh the bright side to Heather’s story.. she did get to tell everyone that she has a nice bum :)

  7. Ron Bellomo says:

    Incidents like this reinforce the fact that everyone who travels these days must have some kind of locking mechanism on their bags, even if they plan to carry the bags on board.

    The locking mechanism may not keep determined thieves out of your stuff. But you will be able tell at a glance that your bag has been tampered with.

    It is scary to think about what could possibly be placed in your luggage.

  8. The Baggage Guy says:

    Hey why’s everyone mad at me? I was just kidding yall!

    It wasn’t even my phone number, it was my buddies. If you want to hear something funny, you should hear the voicemail she left him!

  9. dakirw says:


    Unfortunately, since baggage can be searched, any locks that the TSA can’t open would be cut. Thus, most recommendations I’ve seen are to NOT lock luggage.

  10. JenK says:

    Gabe – Not just valuables – what if she’d had medications or vitamins? Easy to tamper with, wouldn’t you say?

    And: Ew.

  11. Ron Bellomo says:


    Wow. I guess you can tell that I don’t fly very much!

    I guess the only thing left to do is keep your bags with you at all times and not let others take them out of your sight if at all possible.

    I would also keep number of carry-on bags to a minimum.

  12. GMan says:

    dakirw, you can buy TSA-approved locks. They have a normal combination lock or key lock for you and a "master key" slot with a key ID number for the TSA inspector.

    Whenevery the TSA comes across one of these locks they use the appropriate (presumably access controlled) master key to open it, paw through your stuff, then lock it again before sending it down to the baggage-damagers on the tarmac.

    They’re fairly new and are apparently really popular. I’ve got some on my luggage and the TSA folks just check to see its one of the approved locks before they put it on the belt.

  13. Ian Hanschen says:

    I was so expecting a post about applications broadcasting messages with interesting results.

  14. Duncan Bayne says:

    Seriously. I’d hate to be unarmed & at the mercy of creeps like the chap who planted the note in Heather’s bag – and I’m a strong-ish 84kg man.

    I’ve been advised by Air New Zealand that they don’t have any problem with me carrying a kubotan baton on my keychain (although, as they say, individual security officers do have the discretion to remove such items; let’s hear it for the death of objective law).

    Of course, that’s domestic flights within N.Z. only – I know that kubotan batons are explicitly prohibited by American T.S.A. guidelines.

  15. Mike says:

    It surprises me somebody over on that blog said whoever did it should get jail time.

    Is writing such a note actually illegal? If so, under what law? I don’t mean "could she sue him for XYZ harassment" because it seems quite easy to construct such a case in the states (and increasingly in Europe too), I mean would the police get involved?

    What if the baggage hadn’t actually been opened, and instead the note had been taped to the outside or stuck inside a pocket?

  16. GregM says:

    The jail time would not (necessarily) be for writing the note, it would be for opening the luggage without permission.

  17. HeatherLeigh says:

    Hey, thanks to everyone who is saying supportive things.

    Gabe-I agree…breaking into the bag was the issue. The note was creepy and I am totally skeeved out by it (is that a word…skeeved?) and that’s a customer relations issue that AA has to deal with (and they have given every indication that they will). But the more important issues are privacy and security. Also, the bag had a tag with my address in it (skeeved X2).

    AndyB-it’s average at best, trust me. Obviousdly the person didn’t get a chance to comment on my intellect.

    JenK-even just him (or her) potentially pawing my stuff.

    Ron-good advice…I thought I was doing that but didn’t consider the dreaded "gate check".

    Mike-agree. He may have violated some TSA regulation but I doubt jail time is even a remote consideration. I do think the person, if they identify him, will lose his job…at least that’s what I’ve been assured of. I guess the writer of that comment on my blog is a little over zealous. THoguht Greg M makes a good point.

    Raymond-your blog readers are nice and reasonable ; )

  18. Fly Girl says:

    This is truly creepy!

    After reading all the updates on Heather’s blog, it sounds like things are resolving. She’s approached the whole situation in a reasonable and rational matter, rather than the hysteria seen in many of the comment posts.

    These things take time. There are a number of parties involved, and an investigation must occur: people to interview, statements to take, evidence to obtain. Our system of due process requires us to get all this information before taking a final action like termination. I’m guessing however, that any suspected employee(s) may have been suspended during the investigatory process.

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