Spirit Airlines Has to Pay Off Woman After Apple Watch Proves Her Luggage Was Stolen

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A Spirit Airlines passenger in Fort Lauderdale thought her luggage was lost forever until her Apple Watch notified her that the MacBook Pro in the luggage was sitting in a nearby house.

While Apple’s AirTag is usually the champ at finding lost luggage and other items, this time around it was an Apple Watch that dropped a dime on another airline lying about lost luggage.

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Florida’s Local10 News reports that passenger Paola Garcia waited for two hours at Carousel 4 inside Terminal 4 at the Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport. Garcia said she normally carries on her pink hard-shell suitcase but had been ordered to check the bag this time around, after which it disappeared.

The baggage contained a MacBook Pro, an iPad, jewelry, designer clothes, and two Apple Watches.

Spirit Airlines told Garcia her luggage would be sent to her house when it was found. The next day, she received an alert on her (third) Apple Watch. Her description of the alert sounds like a Find My alert. The alert said her MacBook Pro or iPad had been left behind, and were last seen at a particular address.

But the next morning, her Apple Watch was sending a signal, but not from the airport.

“So you’re at home and your watch is pinging at a house in Fort Lauderdale?” asked Local 10 News’ Jeff Weinsier.

“Fifteen minutes from the airport,” Garcia answered.

“So you decided to go to this house?” Weinsier asked.

“Yes, because I said how can Spirit deliver my suitcase there,” she said. “Yes, because I needed my computer. I have test that day.”

The Apple watch signal was coming from a house at 1017 NW 11th Ct.

After arriving at the residence, she saw suitcases scattered around the house, so she called the police. “The first thing the police told me was like, ‘What are you doing here? This is so dangerous for you to be here.”

A Broward Sheriff’s Office detective investigated and determined that the resident of the home, 29-year-old Junior Bazile, was employed at the airport, and was working there when the bag was “lost.” When police took a look at security camera footage from the airport, they saw Bazile going through Garcia’s suitcase and removing items.

By the time Bazile was taken into custody he had reportedly disposed of most of her items. He has been charged with grand theft.

While Spirit Airlines says it has refunded Garcia for the items, it denies any responsibility for the theft. 

“We issued a reimbursement check to the guest as a courtesy, even though we are not currently aware of any evidence that any Spirit employee was involved,” said an airline spokesperson. “We take any allegation of this nature seriously, and we are investigating.”

An airport spokesperson told reporters that passenger bags checked with an airline are under that airline’s care, making it responsible.

As for Garcia, she says she doesn’t believe that Bazile was a solo thief.

“Personally, I don’t think it’s one person working in the airport, I think it’s a group,” she said. “One person can’t just do that, take bags.”

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