United Airlines pilot charged in bizarre ax attack in Denver International Airport parking lot

ByBrian Maas, KCNC, CNNWire
Saturday, August 19, 2023
United pilot charged in ax attack in Denver airport parking lot
A United Airlines pilot went on an ax attack, chopping a parking arm gate off, in a Denver airport employee parking lot.

DENVER -- A United Airlines pilot has been charged in a bizarre ax attack earlier this month in which he savaged a parking arm at a Denver International Airport employee parking lot, causing an estimated $700 in damage, KCNC reported. Police say the pilot, Kenneth Henderson Jones, told them "He just hit his breaking point."

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Video of the incident on on Aug. 2 obtained by CBS News Colorado showed the 63-year-old pilot armed with a full-sized ax. In the video, he chops at the parking arm at the exit gate of an employee parking lot 23 times until he knocked the parking arm off its base. After that, Jones scuffles at length a few minutes later with an airport employee who saw what happened and tried to take the ax away from the pilot. The pilot only surrenders the ax after a second Denver International Airport employee intervenes and helps wrestle it away. Airport administrators described it as a "physical struggle" with no injuries.

Adams County authorities have charged Jones with misdemeanor criminal mischief. He is scheduled to appear in court in Adams County Court on Sept. 25 for an arraignment.

Jones has not responded to numerous inquiries from CBS News Colorado made by phone, email and text message. Russel Carlton, Corporate Communications Manager for United, said, "He was removed from the schedule and is on leave while United conducts an internal investigation." Carlton did not offer further comment or details.

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Federal records show Jones is rated to fly large jets like the 767 and 757.

While Jones has not responded to messages, Adams County Sheriff's deputies say Jones told them, "He just hit his breaking point."

According to a police report, Jones also said he was trying to leave but he estimated there were six cars in line at each of the three exit gates. Airport administrators said there have been issues with the lot as people don't have proper permits. Deputies say Jones told them he "was trying to get rid of issues for everyone waiting."

Videotape from airport cameras shows police officers assigned to the airport apprehend Jones in a nearby field and put him in handcuffs. The same video shows Jones later talking to police and being released from their custody and driving away.

Records show Jones has no previous arrests in Colorado.

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