American Airlines copilot arrested at Detroit Metro Airport after failing breathalyzer
Airport police investigating
ROMULUS, Mich. – A flight out of Detroit Metro Airport was canceled Saturday morning after the copilot was arrested for suspicion that he was drunk, according to the Federal Aviation Administration.
American Airlines Flight 736 was scheduled to leave at 6:59 a.m. and arrive in Philadelphia at 8:47 a.m.
At about 6:40 a.m., TSA reported that the co-pilot was acting like he may have been drinking.
Airport police responded to the North Terminal and conducted a breathalyzer test. The copilot allegedly tested about the legal limit of .04 for blood alcohol.
He was taken to the Romulus Police Department to be tested on a more sophisticated breathalyzer and allegedly still tested over the legal limit.
Airport police are investigating.
Jamie Blaine and her son, Mitchell, were heading to a spring break trip with other seniors from Gross Pointe North High School.
"They had him handcuffed and they were putting him into the vehicle," Jamie Blaine said.
"Everyone was talking about it and stunned when they finally figured out what it was," Mitchell Blaine said.
It took some time for the American Airlines passengers to piece the story together. An announcement first told them they would be delayed due to a different issue.
"'We have a problem, 15 minutes delay. It's a seat problem,'" Mitchell Blaine said.
By the time airport police arrived, Jamie Blaine laughed at first.
"I was joking with my son, Mitchell, because we didn't hear anything," she said. "Then the police car. I said, 'They're coming to get somebody,' then I looked out and saw and said, 'Oh, they really are.'"
The flight was canceled and all passengers were accommodated.
American Airlines released the following statement:
"This is a serious matter and we are assisting local law enforcement and the Federal Aviation Administration with the investigation. We will handle this matter appropriately as the safety and care of our customers and employees is our highest priority. Out of respect for this employee's privacy, we will not have further details to release. Flight 736 has cancelled and we are reaccommodating our customers on other flights. We apologize to our customers for the disruption to their travel plans."
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