A federal grand jury yesterday indicted suspended JetBlue captain Clayton Osbon, whose in-flight meltdown let to an emergency landing in Amarillo, Texas last month, according to court records released today.
Osbon, 49, “moved through the aircraft and was disruptive and had to be subdued and forcibly restrained from re-entering the cockpit,” the indictment stated.
Federal authorities charged Osbon, a 12-year JetBlue veteran, last month with one count of interference with a flight crew. That charge carries a maximum sentence of 20 years.
Co-pilot Jason Dowd safely landed Flight 191 in Texas on March 27 after he locked Osbon out of the cockpit. The flight, which was headed to Las Vegas, quickly turned into an emergency situation when Osbon began racing around inside the cabin, pounding on the cockpit door, and screaming about 9/11 and bombs.
None of the 141 passengers or crew members were injured.
U.S. District Judge Mary Lou Robinson this month ordered federal marshals to transport Osbon to an undisclosed federal medical center.
Prosecutors and Osbon’s attorney agreed to a mental competency exam after a government motion said events described in the affidavit from the FBI “establish a likelihood that Osbon may be suffering from a mental disease or defect.”
The mental exam will ascertain whether he comprehends the charge against him and can assist his attorney in a defense.
- Judge orders mental exam for Clayton Osbon (newsday.com)
- Judge OKs motion to waive hearings for JetBlue pilot (amarillo.com)