A small Apple tracker has helped many travelers with their misplaced luggage and is now helping police arrest an airport worker.
The tracker developed by Apple called AirTag (but which also has similar competitors from other brands) works via Bluetooth. If you’re near a device with active Bluetooth, which was very common in the days when headphones were no longer wired and smartwatches dominated wrists, the device will share its location, which will be sent to the user.
With that and low battery (the same battery found in basic wristwatches that lasts more than a year), these trackers are perfect for those who travel, especially in recent times of European chaos where the lack of staff has produced many losses of baggage.
And that’s exactly what an American traveler did when he left his hometown for Fort Walton on Florida’s west coast overlooking the Gulf of Mexico. When he arrived at his destination, he noticed that some things were missing from his suitcase. A total of $1,600 worth of property was missing, including the AirTag pointing to a home in the town of Mary Esther, adjacent to Fort Walton.
The “disappearance” reported above was recorded last month, but on the 9th of that month, another traveler claimed that $15,000 worth of jewelry was missing from her suitcase, and police concluded that something strange was going on at the airport .
Using the AirTag location data, the Okaloosa County Police Department compiled a list of employees at DestinFort Walton Beach Airport (which shares a runway with the major U.S. Air Force Base Eglin) and saw who lived in Mary Esther on the plaza the device showed , according to NBC News.
The list contained only the name of one employee: Giovanni De Luca, 19, who was an outsourced worker for a handling company responsible for loading and unloading aircraft luggage.
Police went to his home and found all of the belongings in the woman’s suitcase, including all of the jewelry stores. Giovanni admitted to the crimes but said he got rid of the first traveler’s AirTag and stolen goods last month.
He has been arrested on two counts of grand theft, each carrying between 5 and 30 years in prison plus a fine. It was not disclosed which airlines the young man worked for or if they compensated the passengers for the losses.