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Drunken Passenger Who Held Razor Blade to Woman’s Throat On JetBlue Flight to Salt Lake City Gets Sentenced to Time Served

Drunken Passenger Who Held Razor Blade to Woman’s Throat On JetBlue Flight to Salt Lake City Gets Sentenced to Time Served

a jetblue airplane on a runway

A drunken passenger on a JetBlue flight from New York JFK to Salt Lake City who held a razor blade to a woman’s throat because she didn’t want to talk to him has been sentenced to time served after he pleaded guilty to carrying a weapon on an aircraft.

Merrill Darrell Fackrell, 42, of Syracuse, has already spent just over a year in a federal prison awaiting trial for the November 21, 2022, incident and has been immediately released and has been placed on supervised release for three years.

As part of Fackrell’s plea agreement, prosecutors agreed to drop charges of assault with a dangerous weapon, which carries a potential maximum sentence of 20 years. The court also decided to waive a fine because Fackrell does not have the ability to pay.

Prosecutors had alleged that Fackrell had managed to smuggle a cutthroat razor through the TSA security checkpoint at New York JFK onboard Airbus A320 aircraft for the five-hour flight to Salt Lake City.

Fackrell was sitting in a window seat next to a woman who was in the middle seat, and he tried to engage in a “long and varied” conversation while he downed several alcoholic drinks that flight attendants served him.

Eventually, the woman tired of the conversation, and after taking a trip to the bathroom, she put on her headphones and started to watch her seatback TV.

Without warning, Fackrell placed his hand over her screen and told her to pause the movie. He then allegedly held the razor mere inches from her throat before he jumped up and yelled: “She’s going to be ok,” and “no one needs to worry.”

The man’s wife rushed to the front of the plane to get help, giving the victim the opportunity to jump out of her seat and escape Fackrell. Another passenger then convinced Fackrell to drop the weapon and quickly disarmed him before sitting beside him for the remainder of the flight.

During his initial court appearance, Judge Daphne Oberg warned that Fackrell posed a significant risk and that he might be suffering from a partially untreated serious mental health condition.

Fackrell has been ordered to pay a special assessment of $100 and has been banned from drinking alcohol. He will have to take up to eight drug and alcohol tests per month for the duration of his probation.

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