Airline Copilot Charged with Operating Under the Influence

The American Airlines employee was arrested on the runway after failing a sobriety test.

Copilot Arrested Tarmac
An American Airlines passenger snapped a photo of the copilot, John Maguire, being arrested on the tarmac at Detroit Metropolitan Airport on Saturday.CNN

An American Airlines copilot arrested Saturday morning on the tarmac at the Detroit Metropolitan Airport has been charged with operating an aircraft under the influence.

John Maguire, 50, failed two Breathalyzer tests. He was taken away by police while passengers looked on after a TSA agent observed the copilot “exhibiting signs of being drunk,” an airport spokesman said.

The flight from Detroit to Philadelphia was canceled, frustrating many of the understandably surprised passengers on board.

FAA regulations prohibit pilots from operating an aircraft within eight hours of consuming alcohol or with a blood alcohol content of 0.04 percent or greater.

“This is a serious matter and we are assisting local law enforcement and the Federal Aviation Administration with the investigation,” American Airlines said in a statement. “We will handle this matter appropriately as the safety and care of our customers and employees is our highest priority.”