Former Alaska Airlines pilot accused of flying drunk out of PDX - KPTV - FOX 12

Former Alaska Airlines pilot accused of flying drunk out of PDX

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A former Alaska Airlines pilot is accused of flying out of Portland International Airport in 2014 while under the influence of alcohol.

David Hans Arntson, 60, of Newport Beach, California, was arrested on federal charges Wednesday.

According to the Department of Justice, Arntson was released on a $25,000 bond and was ordered to appear for an arraignment on Feb. 10.

According to a criminal complaint filed Tuesday in United States District Court, Arntson was the pilot of two Alaska Airlines flights on June 20, 2014.

The first flight was from San Diego International Airport to Portland International Airport. He then flew a plane from Portland to John Wayne Airport in Orange County, California.

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

A technician for Alaska Airlines performed two tests on Arntson and received results that the pilot had a blood alcohol concentration of .134 percent and .142 percent, according to a Department of Justice release.

The Department of Justice reports after the technician informed Alaska Airlines of the test results, Arntson was removed from all safety-sensitive duties. He then retired.

Arntson's co-pilot on the two flights on July 20, 2014 remembered seeing the drug tester when the plane landed at John Wayne Airport and recalled Arntson say, "I bet it's for me," according to the complaint.

The charge of operating a common carrier while under the influence of alcohol or drugs carries a statutory maximum penalty of 15 years in federal prison.

The investigation into Arntson was conducted by the United States Department of Transportation, Office of Inspector General.

Alaska Airlines released a statement regarding Arntson's arrest Thursday night:

Alaska Airlines has an uncompromising commitment to safety and compliance and we put the safety of our passengers and our employees above all else. We have a zero tolerance policy for employees, including pilots, who fail alcohol and drug tests. Mr. Arntson was immediately removed from duty, he never flew for Alaska after June 20 and he left the company soon after. We believe he is deserving of the Department of Justice's actions.

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