Mounties reveal nature of threat to Kelowna airport

"The inbound flight was never subject to the threat and police believed the aircraft and the passengers of that flight were never in danger.

  • Mon Oct 27th, 2014 7:00pm
  • News

An Alberta man currently residing in Summerland faces a slew of charges for his role in waylaying a domestic flight headed out of Kelowna International Airport.

Michael Joseph Howells was charged Monday with uttering threats, public mischief, possession of a controlled substance, endangering aircraft by false information and mischief. He was held in custody and is expected to appear in court again Oct. 2

Howells got himself embroiled in what was initially deemed a “bomb threat” Sunday.

Just after noon on Oct. 25  Mounties received a report of a possible threat related to an outbound flight set to depart from Kelowna International Airport.

“The aircraft was inbound at the time of the report and, as a precaution, was diverted to a secure location away from the terminal for the ongoing safety of the public, airport personnel, and the facility,” said Const. Kris Clark.

“The luggage of the outbound flight was also isolated away from the terminal building. Both the luggage and passengers were searched but nothing of concern was located.”

Excepet, perhaps, for Howells. He  was handcuffed in the middle of the Kelowna International Airport terminal and led away by RCMP officers around 2:30 p.m., two hours after the plane intended to be used for the Calgary flight landed in Kelowna from Edmonton.

Clark said that it was out of an abundance of caution, and for the purposes of the investigation, that the flight was isolated and the passengers and their luggage searched.

“The inbound flight was never subject to the threat and police believed the aircraft and the passengers of that flight were never in danger,” said Clark.

“The RCMP would like to thank the affected passengers for their patience and co-operation during this difficult situation.”