Off Duty Pilot Accused Of Attempting To Shut Plane Down Mid Flight

( – Whether it’s effective or not, proponents of so-called psychedelic therapy have likely taken a hit following the recent events on a flight from Seattle to San Francisco. Joseph Emerson’s mid-air decision to try and shut down both of flight 2059’s engines in spur of the moment fashion has landed the 44-year-old with more charges than even most serial killers will ever see.

Emerson was off-duty and hitched a ride in the jumpseat in the cockpit, which is standard practice in the airline industry. The professional pilot is facing at least 167 charges, of which 83 are for attempted murder. Though no blood was drawn, reports suggest that had he not been stopped, agents from the National Transportation and Safety Board would now be combing through pieces of wreckage on the ground.

The federal complaint that was lodged against Emerson alleges that in the moments prior to his attempted downing of the aircraft, he was engaging casually with the plane’s two on-duty pilots. In the midst of discussing his Alaska Airlines career and commenting on the weather, he suddenly reached for the emergency engine shut off levers.

According to the two other men in the cockpit, Emerson successfully unseated the handles, but was not able to pull them down all the way. Before doing so, he reportedly flung his headset and yelled “I’m not OK!” While one of the pilots continued flying the plane, the other grabbed Emerson’s arms and forced him out of the cockpit before securing the door shut.

Flight attendants were left to deal with the problem and they reportedly told authorities that the unstable passenger suggested they “cuff” him “right now or” it will “be bad.” Emerson’s hands were then zip tied and the pilots called ground control to ask for permission to make an emergency landing, which was quickly granted.

Once on the ground, Emerson reportedly told police that he had been dealing with mental health issues, severe insomnia and dehydration. He also acknowledged having taken the organic equivalent of LSD, mushrooms, two days earlier.

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