The 62-year-old Ogletree, you see, was headed to Las Vegas on December 30 when he stopped at a pizza place in the Houston airport. Upon departing the food court in Terminal C, Ogletree somehow forgot to take his “expensive black leather coat,” an XL Polo model (with a fashionable plaid lining) worth $800. Not surprisingly, the coat subsequently disappeared. Now Ogletree is threatening to sue the City of Houston, Continental Airlines, and the food court’s management company for failing to have “collected the coat, kept it in a secure place and held it for a reasonable time” until he was able to reunite with the garment. These prospective defendants, Ogletree reasoned, “breached their duty” in connection with how they “manage lost and found items for which they are responsible.”
He wants $800 not to sue.
Now, I’m not sure what duty exists here to monitor for and determine the moment a jacket has been lost.
It’s also not clear there’s any proof that such a jacket exists and was left in the food court.
I have no idea what Continental Airlines’ liability ought to be in all of this, since he left his jacket in the food court rather than on an airplane.
Somewhere in this the fact that he left his jacket certainly ought to play into the responsibility somewhere.
Now I’m not much of a fan of the TSA or overzealous government enforcement of silly rules. But in this case I might make an exception. It seems to me that this lawyer is admitting to leaving his personal items unattended in an airport. Surely there must be an administrative fine in there somewhere!
(Hat tip Dan R.)