The Cook County Sheriff’s Office told CNN in a statement that it was notified that she had left the facility around noon Tuesday, and that electronic monitoring staff immediately began trying to find her location.
“Staff attempted to contact Hartman using the phone built into the device, but Hartman did not answer,” the statement said. “Electronic Monitoring Unit Investigators found that her device indicated she was traveling in the direction of O’Hare International Airport.”
As investigators headed to the airport, the sheriff’s office notified the Chicago Police Department that Hartman appeared to be headed to the airport, according to the statement. Around 1:38 p.m., police were notified that Hartman was close to Terminal 1.
An alarm was activated on her ankle monitoring device and she was detained by Chicago police officers, the statement said. Hartman did not enter any secure areas, the sheriff’s office said.
Hartman, 69, will be returned to the Cook County jail and the sheriff’s office said it is seeking approval to charge Hartman with felony escape.
The attorney representing Hartman said Wednesday that she continues to battle mental health issues and characterized her actions that led to Tuesday’s arrest as a relapse.
“She continues to struggle as a homeless person within a system that is not designed to adequately address the mental health issues Ms. Hartman presents. Until this arrest, Ms. Hartman had been stable for the past year and a half, cooperative and without incident,” Parle Roe-Taylor wrote in an email to CNN on Wednesday.
“Unfortunately, relapse is part of what happens sometimes during treatment. Relapses must be addressed through treatment, and not punitively,” Roe-Taylor wrote.
Roe-Taylor added that Hartman is a nonviolent person “who has not shown to be a risk for harming others.”
A trend of airport arrests
Her streak continued at Sky Harbor Airport in Phoenix. On August 14, Hartman was given a warning for trying to enter a security checkpoint without a ticket. Twelve days later, she was arrested in an airport terminal for criminal trespass. A day after that, Hartman was again seen loitering around a security checkpoint, Phoenix police said.
She was then arrested at O’Hare again in January 2018 after British officials had detained her in London. She was charged with one misdemeanor count of trespassing and one felony count of theft after she succeeded in traveling from Chicago to London without a passport or boarding pass.
Reporters who have followed her arrests said the success of her evasive maneuvers depends on her ability to blend into a crowd as a seemingly harmless, elderly white woman.
CNN’s Keith Allen, Marlena Baldacci, Emanuella Grinberg and Carma Hassan contributed to this report.