The Chicago Police Department confirmed that someone travelling to Chicago, Illinois stole cannabis from an amnesty box at the Chicago Midway Airport.
After legalizing recreational cannabis, Illinois installed cannabis amnesty boxes at the O’Hare and Midway airports so travelers can get rid of their cannabis before they go through security, as it’s illegal to carry cannabis across state lines.
“Cannabis Amnesty Boxes have been placed at Chicago’s airports so travelers have the opportunity to ensure compliance with federal law, as well as the local laws at their destination,” Chicago Police Spokesman Anthony Guglielmi said. “Tampering with them, or attempting to remove anything placed inside, is a crime, and detectives are investigating this matter. In the meantime, new, permanent theft prevention boxes are expected to replace the temporary ones in the coming weeks, making them more secure and preventing anyone from further accessing materials dropped inside.”
Investigators believe the traveler had just arrived when they reached into the box and then immediately exited the airport. Surveillance cameras show a man grabbing the cannabis and hurrying away at around 6 p.m. The stolen cannabis was found on a different traveler, who was allowed to discard the cannabis in the amnesty box and leave.
The box is currently using a temporary design, with one being at the Midway Airport and 12 at the O’Hare Airport. The boxes are owned by the Chicago Department of Aviation, but are serviced by the Chicago Police Department. The police department regularly checks the boxes and if cannabis is found, the cops write a report and inventory, and then dispose of the cannabis.
Permanent theft prevention boxes are expected to replace the temporary boxes in the coming weeks. The new boxes will be more secure and won’t allow anyone from accessing the items inside. No one has been taken into custody and the theft is still being investigated.