JetBlue Pilot Broke Through Plastic Restraints

Clayton Osbon has been a pilot since 1989

By Kate Seamons,  Newser Staff

Posted Mar 28, 2012 11:35 AM CDT

(Newser) – The captain behind yesterday's JetBlue Flight 191 freakout was 49-year-old Clayton Osbon, and passenger David Gonzalez tells ABC News that "I was actually the one that took him down." Gonzalez says he noticed the flight attendants struggling to control Osbon, approached the group, and asked if there was a problem. Osbon's alleged response? "You'd better start praying right now." The former corrections officer says he "put a choke hold on him. I was able to get him weak from cutting his wind pipe." Osbon, who has been a pilot since 1989, passed out, and some passengers tied his legs with their belts—because Osbon was reportedly able to break through plastic restraints.

ABC News also explains how his co-pilot got Osbon out of the cockpit: After Osbon began "appearing confused," the co-pilot asked him to check on something in the passenger area of the plane, then locked the door and reset the security code. JetBlue's CEO described Osbon, whom he knows personally, in a very different light, calling him a "consummate professional" during an interview on the Today Show. "We had a medical situation," said Dave Barger, adding, "it became a security situation." Piers Morgan, meanwhile, last night interviewed two other passengers, Paul Babakitis and Tony Antolino, and had a little advice for Barger: "Call these guys right now and thank them profusely."

Emergency workers tend to a JetBlue captain that had a medical situation during a Las Vegas-bound flight from JFK International airport, Tuesday, March 27, 2012, in Amarillo, Texas.
Emergency workers tend to a JetBlue captain that had a "medical situation" during a Las Vegas-bound flight from JFK International airport, Tuesday, March 27, 2012, in Amarillo, Texas.   (AP Photo/Steve Douglas)
Authorities board JetBlue flight 191, which was headed from New York to Las Vegas, after an emergency landing at Rick Husband Amarillo International Airport in Amarillo, Texas.
Authorities board JetBlue flight 191, which was headed from New York to Las Vegas, after an emergency landing at Rick Husband Amarillo International Airport in Amarillo, Texas.   (AP Photo/The Amarillo Globe News, Roberto Rodriguez)
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ABC News speaks to two passengers on Flight 191.   (ABC News)

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