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United Express pilot who flew while drunk gets 6 months in prison, 6 months home detention
DENVER (AP) ' A United Express pilot convicted of flying a commercial flight while drunk will serve six months in federal prison.
Thirty-three-year-old Aaron Jason Cope of Norfolk, Va., was sentenced Friday in Denver federal court.
Judge John Tunheim also ordered Cope to serve six months in home detention after completing his prison term followed by two years of supervised release.
Cope was convicted in June of flying under the influence on a flight from Austin, Texas, to Denver in December 2009. The flight was operated by Shuttle America for United Express.
The plane's captain thought he smelled alcohol on Cope's breath and a breathalyzer showed Cope had a blood alcohol content of 0.09 percent.
The Federal Aviation Administration prohibits anyone from flying with a blood alcohol content of 0.04 percent or higher.