Unruly Airline Passenger Arrested at Stewart Int'l Airport

Man refused to return to his seat for landing, alarmed other passengers

Tuesday, Feb 16, 2010  |  Updated 12:00 PM EDT
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New York State Police

Robert Wnuk, 41, was charged with criminal nuisance after he caused a disturbance on an airplane.

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An Arizona man has been charged with causing a disturbance aboard a US Airways flight to upstate New York.

State police say 41-year-old Robert Wnuk of Mesa, Ariz., refused to return to his seat and comply with orders of the flight attendant as the aircraft made its final descent into Stewart International Airport in Newburgh on Monday.

Wnuk's behavior caused alarm among the 26 passengers on the flight from Philadelphia, prompting a call from the pilot to authorities on the ground, police say.

Cops arrested Wnuk without incident. FBI and New York investigators decided to charge him under state law with misdemeanor criminal nuisance. He was also charged with possession of a hypodermic instrument, a misdemeanor offense, after authorities discovered a number of hypodermic syringes in his baggage. 

Troopers said they don't know if Wnuk has a lawyer. He was arraigned in the Town of New Windsor Court and remanded to custody in lieu of $500 bail.

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