Off-duty pilot facing attempted murder charges said ‘I’m not right’ before trying to turn off plane’s engines: report – DIGIWIZ CENTRAL

Off-duty pilot facing attempted murder charges said ‘I’m not right’ before trying to turn off plane’s engines: report

An off-duty pilot on an Alaska Airlines flight tried to shut down the plane’s engines mid-flight, officials said.

Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

The off-duty pilot accused of trying to shut the engines of a plane mid-flight reportedly said he wasn’t feeling “right.”
Joseph Emerson said something to the effect of, “I’m not right,” before the chaotic ordeal, ABC News reported.
Emerson, 44, is now facing dozens of attempted murder charges over the Sunday incident. 

The off-duty pilot who is facing dozens of attempted murder charges after officials say he tried to shut the engines of an Alaska Airlines plane mid-flight reportedly said that he wasn’t feeling “right” moments before the bizarre incident. 

Joseph Emerson, the off-duty Alaska Airlines pilot who was seated in the cockpit of the jet, was overheard saying something like, “I’m not right,” before he attempted to mess with the plane’s engines on Sunday, ABC News reported, citing an anonymous federal official briefed on the investigation into the matter. 

Emerson, 44, was riding as a passenger in the flight deck “jump seat” of the cockpit aboard Flight 2059, operated by Horizon Air from Everett, Washington, to San Francisco, California, when the incident unfolded, according to authorities and the airline. 

The off-duty pilot tried to shut down the plane’s engines “by engaging the Engine Fire Handle, also known as the fire suppression system,” which consists of a T-handle for each engine, Alaska Airlines said. 

Police and the airline said that the Horizon captain and first officer quickly responded to secure the aircraft and the flight crew detained Emerson. 

“If the T-handle is fully deployed, a valve in the wing closes to shut off fuel to the engine. In this case, the quick reaction of our crew to reset the T-handles ensured engine power was not lost,” the airline said. 

Alaska Airlines added, “Our crew responded without hesitation to a difficult and highly unusual situation, and we are incredibly proud and grateful for their skillful actions.”

The incident forced the plane, which was carrying 83 other people on board, to make an emergency landing at Oregon’s Portland International Airport. 

When the flight landed just before 6:30 p.m. on Sunday, Port of Portland Police officers arrested Emerson without incident, the department said.

He was booked at the Multnomah County Detention Center and is now facing 83 felony counts of attempted murder, 83 misdemeanor counts of reckless endangerment, and a felony count of endangering an aircraft, jail records show. 

Emerson is slated to be arraigned on the charges later Tuesday. 

According to Alaska Airlines, Emerson joined Alaska Air Group as a Horizon first officer in August 2001.  In June 2012, Emerson left Horizon and joined Virgin America as a pilot. He became an Alaska Airlines first officer following Alaska’s acquisition of Virgin America in 2016.

Three years later, Emerson became a captain for Alaska Airlines. 

“Throughout his career, Emerson completed his mandated FAA [Federal Aviation Administration] medical certifications in accordance with regulatory requirements, and at no point were his certifications denied, suspended or revoked,” Alaska Airlines said. 

Read the original article on Business Insider
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