‘Serial stowaway’ went to O’Hare because she was ‘triggered’ by watching TV interview focusing on her: lawyer

Marilyn Hartman was ordered held without bail Thursday for violating terms of her probation and the conditions of her release following her arrest Tuesday.

SHARE ‘Serial stowaway’ went to O’Hare because she was ‘triggered’ by watching TV interview focusing on her: lawyer
“Serial stowaway” Marilyn Hartman | AP Photo

Marilyn Hartman

AP file photo

An attorney for the so-called “serial stowaway” Thursday said her client ended up at O’Hare Airport again because she was “triggered” watching a television news story on her past criminal cases over the weekend.

Marilyn Hartman, 69, is currently on probation for a 2019 burglary and trespassing conviction at the airport.

She is also awaiting trial on the same charges in connection with another incident at O’Hare.

Hartman was ordered held without bail Thursday for violating terms of her probation and the conditions of her release following her arrest two days earlier.

Prosecutors asked Judge David Navarro to set a “substantially high” bond for Hartman on a new charge of escape from electronic monitoring she picked up following her arrest Tuesday.

“This continues to be a huge, major security breach that she participates in,” Assistant State’s Attorney James Murphy said in court, adding that it was only “a matter of time before somebody gets hurt.”

Murphy said he was sympathetic to previous defenses for Hartman that cited her mental health issues and the non-violent nature of the violations, but said she should be treated the same way as anyone else who comes before the court on an escape charge after repeatedly violating court orders she’s agreed to.

“She continually breaks that promise,” Murphy said.

Hartman’s attorney said her client has been living at Safe Haven, a residential facility for people who are homeless that provides transition support and counseling services, for the last year and a half.

During that time, Hartman has received treatment for her bipolar disorder and depression, which Safe Haven employees said has been working, her lawyer said.

Hartman allegedly became upset on Sunday after watching an old interview that was broadcast on CBS 2 news.

“On Sunday night, there was a broadcast of an interview with Ms. Hartman that she did not agree to; this is an old interview that she did not agree to,” her lawyer said. “She, in fact, has been getting harassed, I would say, by the reporter wanting more interviews.

“That triggered her.”

Hartman allegedly told investigators after her arrest Tuesday that she had gone back to the airport because she was depressed, prosecutors said.

An article published Monday on CBS 2’s website refers to Hartman and reporter Brad Edwards as “pen pals” since late 2019. The interview included audio recorded by Edwards in a 2019 phone conversation with Hartman while she was at Cook County Jail and quotes Hartman consenting to the recording of the interview. Hartman, in the interview, said she had taken more than 30 flights without a ticket and that she was confident she would never do it again.

Navarro Thursday ordered Hartman held on $100,000 bail on the escape charge, noting in his decision that Hartman hadn’t left Safe Haven and gone for a walk.

“You went to the one place you specifically can’t go,” the judge told Hartman.

Hartman is expected back in court for violating her probation and conditions of her release on Monday before Judge Peggy Chiampas.

She is scheduled to next appear on the escape charge on April 7.

The Latest
The man, 21, was found with gunshot wounds to his back and left shoulder in the 9600 block of South Princeton Avenue about 11:35 p.m., police said.
The man, 45, was found by officers with multiple gunshot wounds in the 10700 block of South Champlain Avenue.
NHL
No Cup celebration for Avs as Palat’s goal with 6:22 remaining helps Lightning stave off elimination
But the bigger concern is the Sox’ offense, which managed only one hit Friday.