Criminal Justice

Disruptive plane passenger is arrested with help of onboard sheriff

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A disruptive plane passenger was arrested on Saturday after allegedly harassing passengers and directing his ire at the Milwaukee County sheriff, who was also on board.

Police charged Preston Bluntson, 36, with intoxication and disruptive behavior after the flight landed in Charlotte, North Carolina, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports.

Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke says at that the man ran down the aisle while the flight was landing. “When the plane landed, I held the guy down,” Clarke wrote, while a “Charlotte police officer came on board and handcuffed him. This is when he started yelling racial slurs at me.”

An unidentified passenger on the American Airlines flight told the Journal Sentinel that Bluntson became increasingly loud and obnoxious and directed many of his comments at Clarke, especially during the last 20 minutes of the flight.

But Clarke says it’s not true that Bluntson berated him the entire flight. “Had he come at me with that,” Clarke wrote, “I would’ve just kicked his ass. However, I had to act when we were trying to touch down and he ran down the aisle.” Clarke made a similar comment to the Wisconsin Watchdog.

“As the wheels touched down,” Clarke told the Wisconsin Watchdog, “I got up, pushed him back into his seat as he tried to get up again, and I pinned him down until cops boarded. I yelled for the sergeant and said give me your handcuffs and I cuffed him.”

Clarke and Bluntson are both black. Clarke was on his way to appear as the “featured shooter” at a Cheshire County Republican firearms sporting event in New Hampshire, the Keene Sentinel previously reported.

The Oak Creek Patch also has coverage.

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