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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Thursday, May 16, 2002

Security guard sues airline pilot over Honolulu incident

By David Waite
Advertiser Courts Writer

An American Airlines pilot who allegedly injured a security guard at Honolulu International Airport after the guard asked to check his shoes and jacket is being sued by the guard.

In a lawsuit filed in federal court yesterday by Honolulu attorneys Ian Mattoch and Daniel Kirley, airport security agent Michael Botelho claims pilot Harry Hartsough of Texas assaulted him and injured his eye after Botelho asked to examine his shoes.

The lawsuit accuses Hartsough of acting negligently and engaging in willful and wanton conduct. It asks for monetary damages, with the amount to be determined at trail, and claims American Airlines is independently responsible for Hartsough's actions.

Hartsough and American Airline officials could not be reached last night to comment. Airline officials in Dallas have refused to discuss the incident.

Hartsough, 51, a Dallas-based pilot, was taken to the District Court cellblock last Thursday after being charged with misdemeanor assault. He posted $100 bail and was released.

A checkpoint security camera recorded the pilot's actions.

Marilyn Kali, state Department of Transportation spokeswoman, said previously that part of Hartsough's jacket injured one of Botelho's eyes by scratching a cornea.

Reach David Waite at 525-8030 or at dwaite@honoluluadvertiser.com.