Thursday, January 21, 2016

Former Pilot for Alaska Airlines Arrested on Federal Charges of Flying Passenger Aircraft while under the Influence of Alcohol

David Hans Arntson, a former Alaska Airlines pilot, has been arrested on federal charges accusing him of flying a passenger plane while drunk.



David Hans Arntson:   “I bet it’s for me” when he saw the drug tester at John Wayne Airport, according to court documents, which you can read above or by clicking here 

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Central District of California
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, January 21, 2016

LOS ANGELES – Federal authorities have arrested a former captain with Alaska Airlines on federal charges of piloting a plane with passengers while under the influence of alcohol.

David Hans Arntson, 60, a resident of Newport Beach, was arrested yesterday morning and was arraigned on the felony charge yesterday afternoon in federal court in Los Angeles.

Arntson was released on a $25,000 bond and was ordered to appear for an arraignment on February 10.

According to a criminal complaint filed Tuesday in United States District Court, Arntson was the pilot of two Alaska Airlines flights on June 20, 2014. The first flight was from San Diego International Airport to Portland, Oregon. He then flew a plane from Portland, Oregon, to John Wayne Airport in Orange County.

After landing at John Wayne Airport, Arntson was selected for random drug and alcohol testing by Alaska Airlines. A technician for Alaska Airlines performed two tests on Arntson and received results that the pilot had a blood alcohol concentration of 0.134 percent and 0.142 percent. After the technician informed Alaska Airlines of the test results, it removed Arntson from all safety-sensitive duties.

According to federal law, a person operating a “common carrier,” such as a commercial airliner, is presumed to be under the influence of alcohol when his or her blood alcohol content is 0.10 percent or higher.

Arntson’s co-pilot on the two flights on June 20 remembered seeing the drug tester when the plane landed at John Wayne Airport and recalled Arntson say “I bet it’s for me,” according to the complaint.

Following the June 20, 2014, incident, Arntson retired from Alaska Airlines.

“Those in command of passenger jets, or any other form of public transportation, have an obligation to serve the public in the safest and most responsible way possible,” said United States Attorney Eileen M. Decker. “We cannot and will not tolerate those who violate the trust of their passengers by endangering lives.”

A criminal complaint contains allegations that a defendant has committed a crime. Every defendant is presumed to be innocent until and unless proven guilty in court.

The charge of operating a common carrier while under the influence of alcohol or drugs carries a statutory maximum penalty of 15 years in federal prison.

The investigation into Arntson was conducted by the United States Department of Transportation, Office of Inspector General.

Source:  http://www.justice.gov


SEATTLE -- A former Alaska Airlines pilot is facing federal charges for allegedly piloting a commercial flight while under the influence of alcohol.

David Hans Arntson was arrested Wednesday at his California home and arraigned on the felony charge later that day. The 60-year-old pilot is accused of piloting two Alaska Airlines flights in June 2014 while under the influence, according to federal prosecutors.

On the day in question, Arntson flew from San Diego to Portland, and then from Portland to John Wayne Airport in Orange County, California. When he landed at John Wayne, the airline selected Arntson for a random drug and alcohol test.

Prosecutors say an airline technician performed two tests on Arntson, and both were over the legal limit. The pilot had a blood alcohol concentration of .134 and .142, according to prosecutors.

"According to federal law, a person operating a 'common carrier,' such as a commercial airliner, is presumed to be under the influence of alcohol when his or her blood alcohol content is 0.10 percent or higher," prosecutors said in a Thursday news release.

After failing the tests, Arntson was immediately removed from all safety-sensitive duties. He later retired from Alaska Airlines.

"Those in command of passenger jets, or any other form of public transportation, have an obligation to serve the public in the safest and most responsible way possible," United States Attorney Eileen M. Decker said in the news release. "We cannot and will not tolerate those who violate the trust of their passengers by endangering lives."

Alaska acknowledged the arrest in a Thursday evening statement.

"Alaska Airlines has an uncompromising commitment to safety and compliance and we put the safety of our passengers and our employees above all else. We have a zero tolerance policy for employees, including pilots, who fail alcohol and drug tests," the statement reads.

The charge of operating a common carrier while under the influence of alcohol or drugs carries a statutory maximum penalty of 15 years in federal prison.

Source:   http://komonews.com

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