As 100 Percent Fed Up reported, an off-duty Alaska Airlines pilot is facing 83 counts of attempted murder after he allegedly attempted to shut off a plane’s engines midflight.

Via 100 Percent Fed Up:

“Flight 2059 took off from Everett, Washington, and was bound for San Francisco, Alaska Airlines said in a statement,” NBC News reports.

“It was operated by Alaska Airlines subsidiary Horizon Air, but was diverted due to a ‘credible security’ threat linked to a person in the cockpit’s flight deck jump seat,” the outlet added.

According to reports, the off-duty pilot tried to shut off the engines by “pulling the fire extinguisher handles” on the flight.

The flight was diverted to Portland for an emergency landing.

Additional details from NBC News:

“The jump seat occupant unsuccessfully attempted to disrupt the operation of the engines,” the airline said. “The Horizon Captain and First Officer quickly responded, engine power was not lost and the crew secured the aircraft without incident.”

The flight crew followed “appropriate FAA procedures and guidance from air traffic control” in landing at Portland International Airport. The flight took off just before 5:30 p.m. local time and landed about an hour later in Portland, according to FlightAware data.

Audio of the plane’s communications with air traffic control reveal an attempt to turn off the plane’s engines.

“As a heads up. We’ve got the guy that tried to shut the engines down out of the cockpit. It doesn’t sound like he’s got any issue in the back right now. I think he’s subdued,” the pilot of the plane told air traffic control. “Other than that we want law enforcement as soon as we get on the ground and parked.”



According to NBC News, Emerson admitted to the use of psychedelic mushrooms.

Investigators are trying to determine if he was under the influence during the flight.

Per NBC News:

The off-duty pilot accused of trying to bring down an Alaska Airlines flight told investigators he had not slept for 40 hours and believed he was having a “nervous breakdown,” and also admitted to the use of psychedelic mushrooms, according to a federal complaint filed Tuesday.


The FBI is investigating whether the off-duty pilot — Joseph Emerson, 44, of California — was under the influence when he tried to shut down the plane’s engines while sitting in the cockpit of Sunday’s flight from Everett, Washington, to San Francisco, officials told NBC News.

Emerson denied to investigators he had taken any medications before getting on the flight, but spoke about becoming depressed six months ago and said it was his first time taking mushrooms, the complaint said.

“I didn’t feel OK,” Emerson said, telling investigators that he was tired and dehydrated, according to the complaint. “It seemed like the pilots weren’t paying attention to what was going on.”

“I pulled both emergency shut off handles because I thought I was dreaming and I just wanna wake up,” he added.

In addition to 83 counts of attempted murder, Emerson now faces one count of interfering with flight crew members and attendants.

NBC News aired this video report:

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