It never fails. I'm on a plane, hopeful about getting caught up on
some work, but the WiFi reminds me of old school AOL dial up. Not exactly
in line with my productive aspirations.
Then I find myself distracted by the woman next to me who seems perplexed
that the flight attendant doesn't have olives for her Bloody Mary.
It's not like she caused a ruckus, but plenty of people do while they
are on airplanes. Usually, it starts with someone having one drink too
many (even without the olives), and sometimes people don't realize
that it isn't 1979 and you can't smoke on an airplane.
On occasion, this rowdiness at 35,000 feet turns into a federal crime.
Whether it's an Air Marshal or an FBI agent waiting to greet you at
the gate with handcuffs, federal law enforcement has exclusive jurisdiction
over crimes that occur on airplanes. Why? Because aviation involves interstate
commerce and is regulated exclusively by the federal government.
What Kinds of Crimes Can You Be Charged with on an Airplane?
Think back to your worst nightmare-flight. No, not just the baby that wouldn't
stop crying. Think about the loud obnoxious drunk passenger who kept causing
a commotion, or the extra amorous couple that couldn't wait until
The most common federal criminal charges that occur on an airplane involve:
- Failure to obey a crew member
- Interfering with normal flight operations
- Possession of a weapon
Sex offenses, and in particular, public sexual indecency
And while I'm certainly not trying to give anyone any bright ideas,
it really takes a lot to get criminally charged for doing something stupid
on an airplane. That said, as a
Phoenix criminal defense attorney who has represented dozens of clients charged in federal court, if you
find yourself charged as a result of bad decisions you made while on an
airplane, I can help.
Contact us at (602) 663-9100 to see what we can do to keep what was a bad day from
turning into a life altering permanent felony conviction. We're here to help!
And no, they don't usually have olives for your Bloody Mary on most