Passengers Say He Ran Through Cabin Ranting About Jesus And Al-Qaeda

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — The JetBlue pilot accused in a mid-air meltdown has been found not guilty by reason of insanity.

A Texas judge said Clayton Osbon suffered a “severe mental disease or defect” that impaired his ability during the March 27 incident on JetBlue Flight 191.

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The decision came one month after Osbon was ruled mentally competent to stand trial.

The 49-year-old had faced up to 20 years in prison if he convicted on the charge of interference with a flight crew.

Osbon had an outburst on a flight from John F. Kennedy Airport to Las Vegas before passengers tackled him. The crew then made an emergency landing in Amarillo.

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Passengers said they had to wrestle him to the floor when he ran through the cabin mid-flight, yelling about Jesus and Al-Qaeda.  At one point he allegedly told passengers “We’re not going to Vegas.”

Following the incident, Osbon’s wife released a statement saying she and her family believed “That while he was clearly distressed, he was not intentionally violent towards anyone.”

Osbon will undergo more evaluations at a federal mental health facility before a scheduled court hearing in August. At that time, a judge will decide whether the former pilot will be released or head to a mental facility.

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