Jet Propulsion Laboratory inventory check shows stolen NASA laptop

A laptop belonging to NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in La Cañada Flintridge was allegedly stolen from a contract employee last summer, but the agency didn't realize it was missing until an inventory was conducted in January, officials said.

JPL hired La Crescenta resident Jeffrey Mart in 1997 to complete contract work and he was given an Apple MacBook Pro laptop to monitor space flight operations from home, according to a report provided by the Crescenta Valley Sheriff's Station.

Mart applied to work at the agency full time and was on a waiting list when he was asked to report to JPL's Security Department on July 24, 2012 regarding his background check, according to the report.

Mart allegedly did not show up and left his job at JPL. The agency noticed that the laptop, valued at more than $1,800, was missing in January during an inventory check, according to authorities.

JPL reported the incident to the sheriff's station on April 10. Sheriff's officials recently made attempts to contact the 51-year-old Mart at his residence, but he did not respond to door knocks, according to the report.

Because of the lag time, it's a "stale investigation," said Sgt. Robert Galbraith of the Crescenta Valley Sheriff's Station. "We will make contact with him again and expect to get the laptop back."

-- Tiffany Kelly,

Follow on Google+ and on Twitter: @LATiffanyKelly.

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