US Air patron mixed medication, alcohol — (The Durham Herald-Sun)

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The Durham Herald-Sun, (NC)

October 6, 1996

Author: Associated Press[]

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Mixing alcohol with prescribed medication led a North Carolina man to become unruly during a cross-country flight, a psychiatrist testified.  Dr. William D. Kenner, testifying Friday on behalf of the defense, said Danny Walters was not a danger to the community, based on his interview earlier this week with the 25-year-old Clarkton, N.C., resident.

Walters remains in Montgomery County Jail after U.S. Magistrate Julia Griffin continued his preliminary hearing until Monday in U.S. District Court.  Authorities escorted a drunken Walters off US Air Flight 614 from Las Vegas to Charlotte on Sept. 27 after the plane made an unscheduled landing in Nashville. Crew members said Walter assaulted fellow passengers and, at one point, waved a folding knife at the pilot.

Walters faces two felonies: interfering with a flight crew member and assaulting a passenger. Convictions on both counts could bring up to 20 years and six months in prison and $255,000 in fines.  A pretrial report says Walters proved a danger to the community based on his previous record that included vehicular homicide and assault with a deadly weapon.

Defense attorney Charles R. Ray countered with Kenner’s testimony. The Nashville psychiatrist agreed with a March diagnosis that Walters suffers from post-traumatic stress and panic attacks. Kenner said the stress stemmed from a car accident Walters was involved in at age 18 that left another man dead.

Walters, prescribed Prozac and Xanax, had not eaten since lunch on Sept. 26 before heading to the airport for his flight to North Carolina to visit family, Kenner said.

Copyright, 1996, The Durham Herald Company
Record Number:  0337634685