Unfortunately for Ms. Schmid, the surveillance video depicted Schmid taking the money from a jacket pocket, wrapping the cash in a plastic glove and taking it to a bathroom." The money has not yet been recovered; Schmid is suspected of having passed it on to someone else in the bathroom.
COMMENT: Schmid was promptly arrested on a charge of grand larceny. She has been suspended from her job with the TSA, pending completion of an internal investigation.
One would surely hope that Schmid, a four-year veteran of TSA, gets the book thrown at her, given the brashness of her offense and the fact that she violated the public trust. Given the covert nature on how the money disappeared, one could easily conclude that she's done this before. A felony conviction and one or more years in jail or prison would be a small step toward commensurate punishment.
To demonstrate the embarrassing slaps on the wrist that are being accorded to "federal agents" such as Schmid these days, on January 10, two other JFK TSA screeners pleaded guilty to stealing US$40,000 from a passenger’s checked luggage, yet they got only six months in jail and five years probation. Talk about a miscarriage of justice.
Despite the TSA spin that there are just a few "bad apples" in the TSA work-force, I have tracked well over a dozen of cases in recent years where TSA screeners have engaged in criminal activity. And yet, TSA spends more time "sugar coating" these offenses, when they should be slamming bad behavior of their own people.
Unfortunately, rather than making excuses for the "few," TSA management should be pushing prosecutors to NOT agree to plea bargaining, thereby permitting felonies to be prosecuted as felonies.
I will update our readers on the punishment Schmid receives after her conviction, providing there is one.