Travelers who made the trek to Louisville International Airport in Kentucky to board their flight said the scene resembled one from a movie.
Passengers told Fox affiliate WDRB that when they heard their pilot had been arrested at the airport early Saturday, they assumed he’d been drinking alcohol on the job.
More than three years after a triple homicide in a small Kentucky town, Christian Richard Martin, a pilot for a subsidiary of American Airlines, was arrested in connection with the deaths, authorities said.
Kentucky Attorney General Andy Beshear announced Saturday that Martin, 51, was indicted in the murders of Calvin and Pamela Phillips and Edward Dansereau, who were found dead in 2015 in Pembroke, Ky. Martin, a pilot for PSA Airlines, was taken into custody at Louisville International Airport on three counts of murder, as well as counts of arson, burglary and tampering with physical evidence.
“There will be many steps from here,” Beshear told reporters. But, he added, the indictment illustrates what can happen “when you never stop seeking justice, when you never give up on a case.”
American Airlines said in a statement that it was “deeply saddened” to learn about the allegations against Martin, who has been a pilot for PSA Airlines since January 2018. The airline said that he underwent a background check and “recurrent vetting” but that there was no “criminal history that would disqualify him from being a commercial pilot.”
After the indictment, American Airlines said Martin has been placed on administrative suspension pending the outcome of the case.
In November 2015, Calvin Phillips was found dead of an apparent gunshot wound in his cellar in Pembroke, near the Tennessee border, police said. His wife, Pamela, and a neighbor, Dansereau, were discovered dead in a nearby field inside Pamela’s car, which had been burned, according to The Associated Press.
Authorities have not released a motive, but the radio station WKDZ-FM reported last year that Calvin Phillips was a potential witness in a previous case against Martin.
Martin, who lives in North Carolina, is being held without bail at the Christian County jail in Kentucky, where he is awaiting trial. A trial date has not been set.
A Section on 05/13/2019
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