SEARCH

Entries in Clayton Osbon (9)

Thursday
Aug092012

JetBlue Pilot Who 'Went Berserk' Suffers Psychotic Episode in Hospital

Scott Olson/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- The suspended JetBlue pilot who "went berserk" mid-air earlier this year has now suffered a psychotic episode in a mental hospital, prompting a federal judge in Texas to order that he remain under observation for an additional 30 days before his case is concluded.

Capt. Clayton Osbon, 49, was found not guilty by reason of insanity last month on charges of interfering with a flight crew after he went on an in-flight rampage in March. A psychologist testified the meltdown was a brief psychotic episode triggered by sleep deprivation.

U.S. District Court Judge Mary Lou Robinson ordered Osbon to undergo an evaluation at a mental health facility, which was scheduled to be completed this week.

Federal examiners were ordered to create a report on whether the release of Osbon would create "substantial risk of bodily injury to another person or serious damage to the property of another."

But a forensic psychologist notified the court via email of Osbon's recent psychotic episode Aug. 3, according to court documents. Three days later, the court received a letter from the warden of the Federal Medical Center requesting that Osbon's evaluation be extended.

The nature of Osbon's psychotic episode and what prompted it were not revealed.

Attorneys for both sides in the case agreed to the extension, which lasts until Oct. 15, court documents stated.

The veteran pilot could have faced 20 years in prison for interfering with the instructions of a flight crew, but was found not guilty by Robinson.

"The defendant appeared to suffer from a severe mental disease or defect that impaired his ability to appreciate the nature, quality or wrongfulness of his behavior," she said in her ruling.

Witnesses told ABC News that Osbon's behavior on the flight, which was headed to Las Vegas, was nothing short of bizarre.

"The captain of the plane just went berserk," passenger Wayne Holmes told ABC News in March. "He came out of the other end of the plane -- came running back to the cockpit and he was shouting out these numbers -- 500 something. He started banging on the cockpit door."

A passenger subdued Osbon and the flight was diverted safely to Amarillo, Texas, where he was taken into custody.

Osbon will be evaluated until Oct. 15. Federal examiners will then have a two-week time frame to provide the court with a report on Osbon's progress.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Friday
Jun152012

JetBlue Pilot Who Disrupted Flight Declared Competent to Stand Trial

Courtesy: Randall County Sheriff’s Office(DALLAS) -- A Texas judge has cleared the way for a JetBlue Airways pilot to go to trial.

JetBlue flight 191 from New York was about half-way to Las Vegas on March 27 when, according to passengers, captain Clayton Osbon started screaming about al Qaeda and had to be restrained. The first officer radioed for help and turned toward Amarillo.

"JetBlue 191, emergency," the voice from the cockpit radioed to air traffic controllers. "We're going to need authorities and medical to meet us at the airplane.

Now a judge has found the 49-year-old Osbon competent to stand trial, while simultaneously sealing the results of his psychiatric evaluation.  Osbon, a pilot since 1989, is charged with interfering with a flight crew.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Jun142012

Passengers Sue JetBlue for Pilot Meltdown Incident

Scott Olson/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Passengers aboard the March JetBlue flight on which a pilot had to be locked out of the cockpit and restrained after a rant about al Qaeda and 9/11 have filed the first lawsuit related to the incident.

The lawyer representing some of the passengers aboard JetBlue Flight 191 says the airline must answer why a pilot with known mental-health issues was allowed to fly a commercial plane.

"We know an insane pilot was flying the plane," attorney Steven Epstein said.  "Now we want to know why."

Capt. Clayton Osbon, 49, was suspended from his duties and charged with interfering with flight crew instructions after the March 27 incident on the flight from New York to Las Vegas, during which he ranted at passengers after he was locked out of the cockpit by his co-pilot and had to be restrained until the plane could make an emergency landing in Amarillo, Texas.

Osbon will be in court Friday morning to see whether he is competent to stand trial.  He could face up to 20 years in prison, according to the Department of Justice.

Ten passengers from the flight filed the first of what is expected to be many lawsuits demanding unspecified damages from Osbon and JetBlue.

"People pay attention when money's involved," Flight 191 passenger Marshall Brooks said.  "This is going to get JetBlue's attention, force them to do something about it, and not sweep it under the rug."

Both Brooks and fellow passenger Kathy Euler thought their lives were in serious danger aboard Flight 191, which was carrying 135 passengers and six crew members.  Euler said she now has trouble trusting airline pilots when she places her life in their hands.

"I am petrified," Euler said.  "You normally walk right past the pilot, go to your seat.  I will stop and look at every pilot. ... When the pilot has to be subdued by passengers, the first thought in your mind is, 'Is this plane going to crash.'"

Brooks, Euler and the rest of the passengers say the JetBlue response to the episode -- offering them credit for the disrupted flight and nothing more -- has been insulting.

The airline said there would be "no comment on pending litigation."  Osbon's attorney did not respond to request for comment.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Apr122012

JetBlue Pilot Accused of In-Flight Meltdown Indicted

Courtesy: Randall County Sheriff’s Office(LUBBOCK, Texas) -- Clayton Osbon, the JetBlue Airways pilot accused of having a mid-flight meltdown last month, has been indicted on one count of interfering with a flight crew.

Osbon had to be tackled by passengers last month as he screamed about religion and terrorists.

Osbon is undergoing a psychiatric exam now to figure out if he's sane and can stand trial.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Monday
Apr022012

JetBlue Pilot Held in Jail Following First Court Appearance

Courtesy: Randall County Sheriff’s Office(AMARILLO, Texas) -- JetBlue Capt. Clayton Osbon is being held in a Texas jail without bond following his first court appearance Monday, where he smiled at his wife in the courtroom but spoke very little.

Osbon, 49, only answered "yes" or "no" to questions from Magistrate Judge Clinton E. Averitte regarding Osbon's understanding of the charges against him and his right to an attorney.

"He was advised of his rights and the government filed a motion for pre-trial detention," courtroom deputy Beverley Bratcher told ABC News. "It was a quick initial appearance."

The hearing was Osbon's first public appearance since an apparent breakdown last week on a flight from New York to Las Vegas, during which he screamed about September 11 and religion, was locked out of the cockpit, and had to be restrained by passengers until the plane could make an emergency landing in Texas.

JetBlue Flight 191 was carrying 135 passengers and six crew members. A flight attendant suffered from some bruising to the ribs during the scuffle, but no one was seriously injured.

Osbon has been federally charged with interfering with flight crew instructions. According to the Department of Justice, the charge could be punishable by up to 20 years in prison.

He was not asked to enter a guilty or not-guilty plea Monday.

Osbon appeared in an Amarillo, Texas, federal court for a seven-minute hearing where federal prosecutors asked that he be held without bond until a detention hearing on Thursday. The judge agreed and Osbon is being held in the Randall County Jail in Amarillo without bond.

Osbon's attorney, E. Dean Roper, did not respond to requests for comment from ABC News.

According to an FBI affidavit, "Osbon began talking about religion, but his statements were not coherent. The [first officer] became concerned when Osbon said 'things just don't matter.'"

"Osbon also yelled jumbled comments about Jesus, Sept. 11, Iraq, Iran, and terrorists," according to the criminal complaint filed against him. "He also yelled, 'Guys, push it to full throttle.'"

Osbon was subdued by at least five passengers after his co-pilot reportedly locked him out of the cockpit when he displayed potentially dangerous behavior. The flight from Kennedy Airport in New York was diverted to Amarillo, Texas.

On the ground, Osbon was taken off the plane in handcuffs and a wheelchair by Amarillo police.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Monday
Apr022012

JetBlue Pilot's Family Thanks Crew and Passengers for Compassion

Scott Olson/Getty Images(AMARILLO, Texas) -- The family of Clayton Osbon, the JetBlue pilot who was wrestled to the floor following his bizarre rantings, on Sunday thanked the crew and passengers of the plane "for their effective yet compassionate handling of the situation."

"It is our belief, as Clayton's family, that while he was clearly distressed, he was not intentionally violent toward anyone," Connye Obson, Clayton's wife, said. "We know you were placed in an awful situation and we appreciate your ability to respond professionally."

The statement released on Sunday was the first from Osbon's family since the incident on Flight 191, and in it Connye Obson asked the public to respect his privacy.

Osbon's wife also expressed gratitude to "the kind and compassionate team of doctors and staff at Northwest Texas Healthcare System in Amarillo, as well as the many friends, coworkers, and loved ones who have reached out to us to wish Clayton well during this challenging time."

She added that while the family appreciated and understood "the public's interest in our family's current situation," neither Clayton nor his family would grant any interviews or make further statements.

"We hope you can empathize and understand that our focus completely surrounds Clayton's recovery and the path that lies immediately ahead," she said.

Osbon faces criminal charges following last week's mid-air incident in which he turned off the radios and began to dim the monitor in the cockpit, then ranted about Sept. 11 and yelled ominous instructions in the jetliner's cabin.

According to an FBI affidavit, "Osbon began talking about religion, but his statements were not coherent. The [first officer] became concerned when Osbon said 'things just don't matter.'"

"Osbon also yelled jumbled comments about Jesus, Sept. 11, Iraq, Iran, and terrorists," according to the criminal complaint filed against him. "He also yelled, 'Guys, push it to full throttle.'"

Osbon was subdued by at least five passengers after his co-pilot reportedly locked him out of the cockpit when he displayed potentially dangerous behavior. The flight from Kennedy Airport in New York was diverted to Amarillo, Texas.

On the ground, Osbon was taken off the plane in handcuffs and a wheelchair by Amarillo police. He is now in FBI custody

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Friday
Mar302012

JetBlue Co-Pilot's Mom Proud of 'Cool and Calm' Son

Scott Olson/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- The mother of a JetBlue co-pilot who reportedly locked the plane's ranting-and-raving pilot out of the cockpit during a flight this week said she is not surprised by her son's "cool and calm" reaction to the emergency.

"He's been under pressure before with other things, and he handles it very well," Jean Dowd said of her son, Jason Dowd, in a telephone call with ABC News.

"We are very proud," she said.  "But that was the job he was paid to do.  And we are always proud of him.  We have been proud of him his whole life."

Jason Dowd's quick thinking aboard a Las Vegas-bound flight Tuesday reportedly kept the pilot, Clayton Osbon, 49, out of the plane's cockpit while the rest of the flight crew arranged an emergency landing in Amarillo, Texas.

Osbon was hit Wednesday with criminal charges after the mid-air incident in which he turned off the radios and began to dim the monitor in the cockpit, then ranted about Sept. 11 and yelled ominous instructions in the jetliner's cabin.  The plane was carrying 131 passengers and six crew members.

"Osbon also yelled jumbled comments about Jesus, Sept. 11, Iraq, Iran, and terrorists," according to the criminal complaint filed against him.  "He also yelled, 'Guys, push it to full throttle.'"

Jason Dowd has not come forward publicly as the co-pilot and JetBlue declined to confirm his identity, but his mother said she recognized his voice on cockpit recordings that have been made public.

"When we heard him talking to the tower there in Texas, we could tell by his voice that he was calm," she said.  "And he landed the plane beautifully."

Jean Dowd said she spoke to her son briefly after the incident.

"We heard from him a little bit after later that night," she said.  "He didn't talk very long because he wasn't supposed to say very much.  He just said he was OK, but we could tell he was really nervous.  Of course you are after something like that."

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Mar292012

JetBlue Captain's Father Died in 1995 Plane Crash

Scott Olson/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- The father of suspended JetBlue pilot Clayton Osbon, who was restrained by passengers after going berserk on a Las Vegas-bound flight earlier this week, died in a 1995 plane crash while piloting a personal flight to Daytona Beach, Fla.

Ronald O. Osbon died after he crashed a small plane in Daytona Beach while on a 14 CFR Part 91 personal flight.  His airplane was destroyed and the pilot and one passenger died from injuries after the April 14, 1995, crash, according to a National Transportation Safety Board report from the incident.

His son, Clayton Osbon, was hit Wednesday with criminal charges after the mid-air incident in which he turned off the radios and began to dim the monitor in the cockpit, then ranted about Sept. 11 and yelled ominous instructions in the jetliner's cabin, which was carrying 131 passenger and six crew members.

Wednesday's charges against Osbon, 49, were accompanied by an FBI affidavit that provides a fresh view of what went on in the cockpit of the plane before Osbon burst into the plane's cabin.

"Osbon began talking about religion, but his statements were not coherent," the affidavit said.  "The [first officer] became concerned when Osbon said 'things just don't matter.'  Osbon yelled over the radio to air traffic control and instructed them to be quiet."

Osbon turned off the radios and began to dim the monitor.  The first officer became "really worried" when Osbon said, "We need to take a leap of faith," "We're not going to Vegas," and "began giving what the FO described as a sermon."

Osbon's behavior became ominous shortly after takeoff from New York's John F. Kennedy Airport.  As the plane gained altitude, he mentioned something about "being evaluated" to the plane's first officer.  The officer was not sure what Osbon meant.

The concerned officer suggested to Osbon that they invite an off-duty JetBlue captain who was traveling as a passenger to the cockpit, but, instead, Osbon abruptly left the cockpit.

In the cabin, Osbon allegedly "aggressively grabbed a flight attendant's hands" and mentioned "150 souls on board" before sprinting back to the galley and eventually trying to get back into the cockpit, where the first officer had already changed the security code.

Crew members also said that Osbon had "showed up at JFK later than he should have for the flight and missed the crew briefing."

The Federal Aviation Administration called the incident a medical emergency, but law enforcement sources have called the outburst a panic attack.

An unruly Osbon was subdued by at least five passengers after his co-pilot reportedly locked him out of the cockpit when he displayed potentially dangerous behavior.  The flight from Kennedy Airport in New York was diverted to Amarillo, Texas.

On the ground, Osbon was taken off the plane in handcuffs and a wheelchair by Amarillo police.  He is now in FBI custody.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Mar282012

JetBlue Pilot Yelled About Sept. 11 and 'Push It to Full Throttle'

Scott Olson/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- The JetBlue pilot who had to be restrained by passengers was hit Wednesday with criminal charges as court documents reveal he ranted about Sept. 11 and yelled, "Guys, push it to full throttle."

Capt. Clayton Osbon, 49, was suspended from his duties Wednesday and charged with interfering with flight crew instructions. According to the Department of Justice, this charge could be punishable by up to 20 years in prison.

The charges were accompanied by an FBI affidavit that provides a fresh view of what went on in the cockpit of the plane before Osbon burst into the plane's cabin.

It also states that at the height of the melee on board the Las Vegas bound jetliner carrying 131 passenger and six crew members, Osbon's rant made alarming allusions to terrorists.

"Osbon also yelled jumbled comments about Jesus, September 11, Iraq, Iran, and terrorists," according to the criminal complaint. "He also yelled, 'Guys, push it to full throttle.'"

Osbon's behavior became ominous shortly after takeoff from New York's John F. Kennedy Airport. As the plane gained altitude he mentioned something about "being evaluated" to the plane's first officer. The officer was not sure what Osbon meant.

"Osbon began talking about religion, but his statements were not coherent," the affidavit said. "The [first officer] became concerned when Osbon said 'things just don't matter.' Osbon yelled over the radio to air traffic control and instructed them to be quiet."

Osbon turned off the radios and began to dim the monitor. The first officer became "really worried" when Osbon said, "We need to take a leap of faith," "We're not going to Vegas," and "began giving what the FO described as a sermon."

Crew members also said that Osbon had "showed up at JFK later than he should have for the flight and missed the crew briefing."

The FAA called the incident a medical emergency, but law enforcement sources have called the outburst a panic attack.

"As of now, he's been taken off all active duties and responsibilities pending further investigation," JetBlue spokeswoman Tamara Young told ABC News Wednesday.

An unruly Osbon, with 131 passengers and six crew members aboard flight 191, was subdued by at least five passengers after his co-pilot reportedly locked him out of the cockpit when he displayed potentially dangerous behavior. The flight from Kennedy Airport in New York was diverted to Amarillo, Texas.

Osbon's last medical exam was in December 2011, according to the Federal Aviation Administration. His FAA record has no accidents or incidents and no enforcements.

Tuesday's incident is not the first time airline crews have alarmed or even killed passengers. In October 1999 on Egypt Air, flight 990, a 767 from New York to Cairo with 217 aboard, disappeared when the co-pilot deliberately crashed the plane into the Atlantic.

In 1997, a Silk Air 737 flying over Indonesia nose-dived, killing 104 passengers. Investigators say the pilot committed suicide, taking all of his passengers with him.

Earlier this month, an American Airlines flight attendant had to be restrained after threatening impending doom. That plane returned to the gate and the flight attendant was taken away, complaining of psychiatric problems.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio







ABC News Radio