Alaska Airlines pilot gets prison for flying plane while drunk

NEWPORT BEACH, Calif. – A Newport Beach man was sentenced Wednesday to a year and a day in federal prison for piloting an Alaska Airlines plane with a blood-alcohol level more than three times the legal limit in 2014.

David Hans Arntson, 63, pleaded guilty in February to a felony count of operating a carrier while under the influence, San Diego Union-Tribune reported. He acknowledged as part of a plea agreement that he was an alcoholic for a “substantial” portion of his career as an airline pilot.

U.S. District Judge Cormac Carney called Arntson’s offense “very dangerous” and ordered him to pay a $10,000 fine.

According to court documents, Arntson piloted two Alaska Airlines flights on June 20, 2014. The first was at 6:21 a.m. from San Diego to Portland, Ore. After a brief layover, he piloted a flight from Portland to Orange County.

After he landed at John Wayne Airport, Arntson was selected for random drug and alcohol testing by Alaska Airlines.

Read more at San Diego Union-Tribune.

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