Trump-loving “People’s Sheriff” David Clarke, the Sheriff of Milwaukee County, aided in the detention and arrest of a passenger who heckled him, the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department confirmed. According to reports published in the Charlotte Observer and the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, Preston Bluntson recognized Clarke while aboard an American Airlines flight from Milwaukee to Charlotte.
The plane was small — only “about 12 rows” — and passengers said that Bluntson could be heard making comments almost from the moment the plane took off from Milwaukee. During the course of the two-hour flight, Bluntson became “very abusive” according to a witness who did not want to be named. The witness said that for the last 20 minutes of the flight, Bluntson escalated his remarks, directing them at Clarke.
Bluntson, who is black, told Clarke, who is also black, that he “was not one of us” and he berated Clarke for “closing our parks.”
At the end of the flight, Sheriff Clark used bodily force to restrain the man before Charlotte-Mecklenburg police could board the airplane to arrest Bluntson. The Charlotte Observer printed the account of what happened next from the press release put out by the sheriff’s department:
“The sheriff left his seat…and told the man to ‘chill out.’…The man continued his obnoxious behavior and on approach to landing he got out of his seat…While the plane taxied to the gate he began taunting the sheriff, asking him what he was going to do about it,” said the statement from the Sheriff’s Office.
“Clarke ordered him to sit down and when he refused, Clarke shoved the unruly passenger face down and pinned him against the seat and held him there until the flight arrived at the gate.”
Bluntson was taken into custody and charged with “intoxicated and disruptive behavior.” He was later released on bond after spending 36 hours in jail.
Ed. note: An earlier version of this article referred to Clarke as the self-declared “America’s Sheriff.” He actually refers to himself as the “People’s Sheriff.” RS regrets the error.