Woman who abused 19-year-old on convicted Alaska Airlines flight
An Oregon woman who assaulted another passenger on an Alaska Airlines flight last year was sentenced Monday to eight months of house arrest and three years of probation.
Banks’ 27-year-old Heidi McKinney did not speak in federal court upon her conviction, but wrote a letter of apology to the young woman whom she verbally and physically assaulted.
The encounter took place on May 8, 2016, when a 19-year-old woman boarded a flight to Las Vegas to return home to Portland. She said a “horny” woman later identified as McKinney attempted to sit in her row and placed her hands on her chest inappropriately.
McKinney, who was traveling with her sister-in-law, insisted on taking several photos of the 19-year-old despite her protests. After the plane took off, McKinney attempted to get the 19-year-old to drink alcohol that she had smuggled onto the plane. When the 19-year-old refused, McKinney threw the bottle in the victim’s lap, prosecutors said.
McKinney subjected the 19-year-old to obscene and humiliating taunts and physical touching, including licking her ear, placing her hand on the victim’s crotch repeatedly and trying to force the youngster 19 year old girl touching McKinney’s breasts. , wrote US Assistant Prosecutor Ravi Sinha in a sentencing memo.
At one point, McKinney climbed on top of the victim and said she wanted to have sex, according to Sinha’s note.
As the 19-year-old pushed her away, McKinney insulted her and called her “poor.” The victim alerted a flight crew member, who took her away from McKinney, according to the prosecutor.
McKinney was initially charged with abusive sexual conduct. As part of a plea deal, she pleaded guilty to assault with intent to commit a felony.
His defense attorney, Lisa Ludwig, suggested that McKinney had suffered from alcohol abuse since he was a teenager and that it coincided with his own sexual abuse.
The victim was seated in the front row of the courtroom gallery, but was too moved to read her prepared statements in court. As the prosecutor said it was her turn to get in and speak, she remained in her seat, shaking her head back and forth.
Instead, his grandmother approached the defense table on his behalf and read his remarks.
“Personally, I don’t feel you know how much damage you caused me,” the victim wrote. “That day you played with my head and took something from me that I will never get back.”
The victim wrote that she blamed herself for being too friendly with McKinney when she first boarded the plane and suffered sleepless nights as a result of the abuse .
“What you did was not acceptable in any form,” she wrote. But she added that she had forgiven McKinney, in large part because she felt she needed to do so to get on with her life, and hoped McKinney would get help. she needed.
The prosecutor and defense counsel jointly recommended a three-year probation sentence, with restitution of $ 3,000. But United States District Judge Anna J. Brown said the sentencing guidelines call for house arrest and a variation from that would be “completely irrelevant. “.
“She must first be held responsible for her crimes,” said the judge.
McKinney’s attorney requested that his client be allowed to leave her home to attend school, church and Alcoholics Anonymous meetings and to seek employment.
McKinney completed a hospital alcoholism treatment program in June and is completing courses for an associate’s degree in August, Ludwig told the court. She strives to develop “more appropriate sober relationships with her peers of the same age,” Ludwig said.
McKinney has two previous impaired driving convictions in 2007 and 2015.
As a condition of her probation, McKinney cannot have any firearms in her home, and she cannot have “anything to do with” her husband’s marijuana business, including any bookkeeping or contact with her husband’s money. ‘business, ordered the judge.
She also cannot drink alcohol.
“Absolute abstention from alcohol is a requirement for you,” Brown told McKinney. “You just can’t drink. “
McKinney planned to pay restitution in full on Monday, his lawyer said.