Was Minneapolis boy who snuck on Vegas flight meeting someone? - FOX 10 News | myfoxphoenix.com

Was Minneapolis boy who snuck on Vegas flight meeting someone?

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MINNEAPOLIS (KMSP) -

The story of a 9-year-old runaway from Minneapolis who snuck through airport security in the Twin Cities and made his way onto a Delta flight to Sin City got a bit murkier on Monday with the revelation that the boy may have been trying to meet someone he met online.

The Transportation Security Administration is reviewing procedures at the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport after the boy made his way aboard a plane he didn't have a ticket for last week. Officials say he slipped by security by jumping in with another family.

Delta is also reviewing their policy because the boy was able to walk onto the plane when the gate agent wasn't looking, and the flight was already mid-way to its destination before the crew noticed they had a stowaway among them.

"Pretty unbelievable he could get that far with just sneaking by," Justin Behnke remarked.

In a statement, a Delta spokeswoman said, "We commend the flight crew of Flight 1651, whose vigilance and awareness of the cabin led them to proactively alert authorities to the situation prior to the aircraft landing in Las Vegas."

Many have wondered why a 9-year-old would choose that destination, and on Monday, word emerged that he may have been trying to meet a person he met through an online video game.

Las Vegas police met the boy as he was disembarking, and he reportedly told officers he had met someone from Nevada online and was en route to visit. Sources tell FOX 9 News the boy's mother told police the family does not know anyone there.

Yet, the revelation has spawned several other questions:

- How old is the person he may have been meeting
- What is that person's motive?
- Did the person help the 9-year-old figure out how to hitch an undocumented lift?

Security video shows the 9-year-old at the security checkpoint and boarding the plane, and authorities plan to review the footage again on Tuesday morning; however, it's unclear whether it will be released.

The boy was placed in protective custody in Nevada, and Hennepin County Child Protection is now involved in bringing him home. At this point, no one will comment on when that may happen -- or if it already has; however a television station in Las Vegas reported Monday that a GPS ankle bracelet has been put on the boy to ensure he doesn't evade authorities again. 

Late Monday night, the Star Tribune reported on an internal e-mail from Hennepin County Child Protection that described the boy as "troubled, with a history of lying and evading authorities." In fact, he's even accused of stealing a car despite his young age.

The internal e-mail reported by the newspaper also suggested that the boy's mother may work at the airport; however, an airport spokesman would not confirm that information with FOX 9 News because he did not want to provide any details that could lead to the identification of either the mother or the boy.

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