Mon. Feb 26th, 2024
alert-–-off-duty-alaska-airlines-pilot,-44,-‘tried-to-shut-down-jet’s-engines-in-mid-air-while-riding-in-cockpit-jump-seat,’-forcing-plane-to-divert:-charged-with-eighty-three-counts-of-attempted-murderAlert – Off-duty Alaska Airlines pilot, 44, ‘tried to shut down jet’s ENGINES in mid-air while riding in cockpit jump seat,’ forcing plane to divert: Charged with EIGHTY-THREE counts of attempted murder

An off-duty pilot accused of trying to shut off the engines on a packed-out Alaska Airlines passenger jet on Sunday has been charged with 83 counts of attempted murder. 

Joseph David Emerson, 44, faces the litany of homicide charges along with an additional 83 counts of reckless endangerment and one count of endangering an aircraft, police documents show. 

Emerson is believed to have been sat in the jump seat beside the operating pilot on board a Embraer 175 plane flying from Everett in suburban Seattle to San Francisco. 

He is accused of attempting to deploy the fire suppression system before crew members managed to ‘subdue’ him and remove him from the controls, according to the Federal Aviation Administration. 

Alaska Airlines said the flight, which departed Washington state at 5.23pm, was diverted to Portland International Airport following the ‘security threat’.

An off-duty pilot accused of trying to shut off the engines on a packed-out Alaska Airlines passenger jet on Sunday has been charged with 83 counts of attempted murder. (Pictured: an Alaska Airlines plane at the same airport in 2020)

Joseph David Emerson, 44, faces the litany of homicide charges along with an additional 83 counts of reckless endangerment and one count of endangering an aircraft, police documents show. (Pictured: the cockpit of a similar plane) 

‘On Oct. 22, Alaska Airlines Flight 2059 operated by Horizon Air from Everett, WA (PAE) to San Francisco, CA (SFO) reported a credible security threat related to an authorized occupant in the flight deck jump seat,′ Alaska Airlines said.

‘The crew secured the aircraft without incident.

‘We are grateful for the professional handling of the situation by the Horizon flight crew and appreciate our guests’ calm and patience throughout this event.’ 

Live Air Traffic audio appears to show a pilot describing the person believed to be Emerson ‘subdued’ after the incident, suggesting there was a struggle.  

‘We’ve got the guy that tried to shut the engines down out of the cockpit and he doesn’t sound like he’s causing any issue in the back right now, I think he’s subdued,’ a pilot told air traffic controllers, according to audio recorded by Live ATC. 

‘We want law enforcement as soon as we get on the ground and parked.’

Emerson was arrested by Port of Portland officials, and he is described in his booking sheet as a 6 foot 1 44-year-old bald white man with blue eyes, weighing 210lbs. 

HIs father John Emerson declined to comment when called by AlertContent.com on Monday.  

Alaska law enforcement is investigating. This is an unfolding news story. 

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