comscore Man pleads guilty to assault on flight from Seattle to Maui | Honolulu Star-Advertiser
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Man pleads guilty to assault on flight from Seattle to Maui

  • ASSOCIATED PRESS / JULY 20, 2009

    In this 2009 file photo, a Delta Airlines plane flies into Portland International Airport in Portland, Ore.

A college student in a Honolulu courtroom today used a soft voice to recount his drunken behavior on a flight from Seattle to Maui, which included hitting a flight attendant.

“I was not kind and I was yelling obscenities and I was making threats,” Eric Matthew Schneider said of the Aug. 3 flight.

He was charged with interfering with a flight crew, a felony, after the FBI accused him of threatening to kill passengers, shoving an attendant and busting out of plastic handcuffs.

In a deal with prosecutors, Schneider pleaded guilty to misdemeanor assault on an aircraft and could receive a sentence of up to a year in jail.

Schneider said he was drinking alcohol before and during the flight. He struck a flight attendant while flailing his arms as he was being restrained in plastic handcuffs, he said.

It was about two hours into the flight when an intoxicated Schneider became verbally abusive toward passengers and challenged crew members to fight, Assistant U.S. Attorney Tom Brady said.

One of the physical confrontations ended with Schneider falling into a passenger’s lap and ripping a galley curtain off its rings, the FBI wrote in a criminal complaint at the time. Schneider had a double tequila cocktail and demanded more drinks, according to the complaint.

He broke free from a set of plastic handcuffs, requiring another set be placed on him, authorities said.

Schneider also urinated all over the floor and walls of a restroom, Brady said.

He’s banned from flying on Delta Air Lines.

Sentencing is scheduled for April 1.

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  • Delta banned him on all future flights, like it could punish him? Lots of luck, it its their bottom line that will suffer. On the other hand for PR sake it is what it is.

    • Probably easier to convict him of the misdemeanor rather than the felony charge. Either way, the fool is banned from flying on Delta and should be banned from flying ANY airline.

  • Yep, using mind altering substances only hurts the people who use them. Nobody else is affected so let’s keep legalizing more ways to act like a crazy person.

    • Generalizations are always wrong! (See what I did there?)

      Alcohol is renowned for generating this type of baboozery. You certainly won’t deny that, right?

      Now let me give you a first-hand example to illustrate the foolishness of your generalization about the effects of all mind-altering substances. In 1969 I was one of three stand-bys on a redeye from HNL to LAX, it was a 747 and for some reason they decided to segregate the three of us in the back section of about 100 seats, all by our lonesomes. The other two promptly crashed out. So after a couple of hours I whipped out my hashpipe and started shaving bits off a Nepalese temple ball. After awhile one of the stews came back and I convinced her to join me. The flashing rainbow neon lights of LA as we made our approach never looked the same before or since.

      Now contrast that with Babooze Boy, snockered on double tequilas, brawling in the aisle and spewing golden showers all over the restroom. And perhaps you’d care to rethink your generalization…?

      • HanabataDays has a point, medications also cause dysfunctional behavior. There are lots of incidents investigated by both Feds and local authorities of combative behavior at 37,000 feet are the result of medication or the mix of medication and alcohol.

        • No, clearly it would’ve been a waste of time for me to put in my application. The State clearly signaled — and the $$million$$ in wealth of the huis that are fighting for the permits makes it abundantly clear — that this is all about the scrilla for them.

          I don’t have enough bags of gold to compete with the big dogs financially, so I’m content to stay out of the scrimmage, on the sidelines, with the one bag of “gold” that’s sufficient for me.

  • “….interfering with a flight crew, a felony, after the FBI accused him of threatening to kill passengers, shoving an attendant and busting out of plastic handcuffs.”

    In a deal with prosecutors, Schneider pleaded guilty to misdemeanor assault.

    And I thought our judicial system was i a sorry state.

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