Only a few weeks after installation at a Midway Airport, a “Cannabis Amnesty Box” had been broken into on Wednesday. According to Chicago police, an incoming traveler had managed to steal marijuana left behind by a separate passenger.
Following the legalization of recreational marijuana in Illinois, the boxes had been installed in both Midway and O’Hare airports for departing passengers to dispose of their cannabis products before boarding their flights. While airport authorities do not target passengers carrying marijuana, as it is legal to have in Illinois airports, it is both illegal under federal and to fly with drugs of any kind. Any passenger caught with marijuana by Midway Airport security is made to leave it in an amnesty box.
Police first noticed the marijuana missing during a check on the amnesty boxes around 8 p.m. on Wednesday. Surveillance footage revealed a man reaching into the box and making off with the marijuana hours earlier. The man is believed to be an incoming passenger.
According to police, passengers should not be able to access the contents within amnesty boxes. The Chicago Department of Aviation and the Chicago police are responsible for handling the contents left in the boxes.
A spokesperson for the TSA stated that the TSA does not purposefully search passengers for “marijuana or cannabis-infused products” at security checkpoints. However, agents are “obligated to report the discovery of any drugs or substances that are illegal under federal law.” The local police are then responsible to take action if necessary.
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