The COVID Pandemic is not a License to Commit Federal Cri

Airplane Passengers

It never seems to fail that when I need Wi-Fi on an airplane, it’s down. Yes, because I am based in Phoenix, I fly American a lot and that’s typically the airline whose Wi-Fi never works. Why do I fly so much? Because I defend federal criminal cases around the country. Some of my clients are from Phoenix and charged in other states, and some of my clients are from other states and just want me to represent them. The silver lining of Wi-Fi not working is that it gives me time to catch up on my blogs.

Before the pandemic, people generally behaved well on flights. Sure, there were always those people who had one or three too many Jack Daniels, but for the most part, people were pretty decent. Now, in an age when we have to wear masks, people fight, swear, and are generally unruly about having to do so.

More and more people are being charged with the federal crime of interfering with a flight crew. Yes, you heard it here – acting like a fool on an airplane and giving the flight attendants a hard time can get you arrested and charged with a federal crime. And guess what else, the COVID pandemic is not a license to commit this or any other federal crime.

If you ask any career criminal about their key to success (assuming there is such a thing), they will tell you to make sure that there are no witnesses and that there is no evidence linking you to the crime. So think about it, if you are going to commit a federal crime on an airplane, there’s likely going to be dozens of witnesses and someone is going to whip out their cell phone and record you in your moment of glory so that there is no dispute that the prosecutor will have solid evidence against you.

I understand that masks are bothersome and, frankly, I am not a huge fan of wearing them for long periods. But rules are rules and if you want to fly, you are going to need to follow them and wear one. It’s simply not worth causing a ruckus and getting yourself a felony conviction, losing your right to vote, and your right to possess a firearm. Don’t let any other criminal defense attorney fool you into thinking that you’ll likely get anything more than probation, but the reality is that you just don’t need the hassle.

Again, my suggestion is that you not interfere with a flight crew, but if you are accused of committing this or any other federal crime, contact me at (602) 663-9100 to set up a confidential consultation. Enjoy your flight.

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