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Witnesses: Pilot Walked Out Of Cockpit Shouting Threats

Last updated on Wednesday, March 28, 2012

(AMARILLO, Texas) - Federal investigators are trying to figure out what sparked a JetBlue pilot’s bizarre behavior that resulted in him being locked out of the cockpit by his own co-pilot.

On its way from New York to Las Vegas, Flight 191 was forced to make an emergency landing in Amarillo, Texas.

Journalist Laurie Dhue was on the plane when the outburst happened.

"I was simply watching what was going on and thought 'I don't know what is wrong with this pilot, but I sure hope he doesn't have a gun,'" Dhue said.

According to Dhue and other passengers, the plane's captain walked out of the cockpit, leaving the door open, which was the first sign something wasn't right,

After talking with flight attendants, he ran down the aisle screaming about threats linked to Afghanistan and al-Qaeda, witnesses said.

Seconds later, the pilot tried to gain access into the cockpit.

"He was banging on the door and then typing in the secret code to get into the cockpit, he was saying 'We got to bring the throttle down, we got to land this plane,'" Dhue said.

At that point, several large men rushed to the front of the plane and tackled the pilot. They subdued him in a matter of seconds.

David Gonzales is one of the passengers other passengers called a hero.

"I knew what was going to happen at that point. If he opened that door, I wouldn't be here," Gonzales said.

JetBlue officials said the pilot was suffering from a medical issue.

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