American Airlines Flight Delayed 3 Hours Following Airport Pilot Murder Arrest


In an event that sounds like it is out of a thriller novel, passengers found their American Airlines flight delayed because their pilot was arrested for the capital crime of murder!

Airport police need to be prepared for any situation, like in SFO during immigration protests. Photo: Wikimedia.

Naturally, the pilot is innocent until proven guilty (and thus we won’t name names here, but a quick google search will find it elsewhere), but this startling event has sent shockwaves throughout the aviation industry, touching passengers and airlines alike.

What are the details?

We all expect delays, from weather to operational issues. But never that the pilot of our upcoming flight is arrested for a serious crime.


The pilot in question, who was the first officer for flight Flight 5523 from Louisville to Charlotte, was arrested in front of passengers for three counts of murder just before he boarded the plane to begin prechecks.


Passengers described a scene of commotion, with a small army of heavy armed police approaching the man (who, being ex-military was still highly-trained and in excellent fitness), shutting down the wing of the terminal and performing the arrest swiftly.

This caused the flight to be delayed well into the afternoon as American Airlines scrambled to find an new (and presumably crime free) first officer.

Passengers were naturally rattled, with many taking to Twitter to describe their close brush with a possible murder (who would have been flying their plane).


Whilst later were just upset that their flight was delayed.

What does American Airlines think?

It’s important to remember that this pilot, who had passed the government mandated background checks, had been flying American Airlines for a year and a half. He had a perfect track record and (thus far) no complaints against him (personality or performance).

Texas Storm
American Airlines has taken a neutral position during this event. Photo: Tom Boon – Simple Flying

American Airlines has issued this statement:

“All of us at American Airlines and PSA Airlines are deeply saddened to have learned about these allegations from 2015. Our team was made aware of the indictment this morning after his arrest at Louisville International Airport.

“We have an unwavering commitment to the safety and security of our customers and team members, and we will provide any investigative assistance possible to law enforcement throughout their investigation.”

As this situation is still ongoing, Simple Flying will keep updating this story.

What do you think? Would you fly on a plane with a pilot accused of triple homicide?