American Eagle pilot charged in alcohol incident 10 Apr 13

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) – An American Eagle pilot has been charged with three gross misdemeanors after authorities say he failed a blood-alcohol test as he prepared to fly out of the Minneapolis airport in January.

Forty-eight-year-old Kolbjorn Jarle Kristiansen was arrested at the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport on Jan. 4 after airport police said they smelled alcohol on his breath before a flight to New York City.

Authorities say a preliminary test revealed a blood-alcohol concentration of 0.107. The limit for commercial pilots is 0.04.

Kristiansen, who lives in Raleigh, N.C., was charged Tuesday with three counts related to attempting to operate an aircraft under the influence of alcohol.

Kristiansen’s attorney, Peter Wold, says his client never operated the aircraft or touched the controls.

Wold says Kristiansen remains suspended from American Eagle.