Former Flight Attendant Pleads Guilty to Making False Bomb Threat
BOSTON—A former American Airlines flight attendant pleaded guilty today in U.S. District Court in Boston to making a false bomb threat on a plane scheduled to fly from Boston to Miami.
Nancy Marie Gray, 52, pleaded guilty to one count of giving false information about the presence of a bomb on an aircraft and was sentenced by U.S. District Court Judge Indira Talwani to time served, approximately 18 months in prison.
On Sept. 30, 2009, while working as a flight attendant on American Airlines Flight 1318 scheduled to fly from Boston to Miami, Gray wrote “Bomb on Board! BOS-MIA” on the inside of the airplane’s bathroom storage closet during pre-flight preparations. Claiming that she had discovered the note, Gray informed the lead flight attendant and the pilot. After inspecting the note, the pilot immediately halted the ongoing boarding procedure, evacuated the plane, and notified airport security and law enforcement. Dozens of first responders quickly reported to the scene, and the plane was swept with a bomb-sniffing dog before removing the aircraft to a remote location at Logan International Airport. There, all luggage was unloaded from the plane and checked for explosives, and the exterior of the plane and its cargo hold were thoroughly searched. No bomb was found.
Gray was indicted in August 2010. After a jury trial in March 2013, she was found guilty of making the false bomb threat and sentenced to prison. Gray was released from prison in March 2015 after the First Circuit Court of Appeals granted her a new trial due to an erroneous jury instruction given at the close of the 2013 trial. Instead of a new trial, Gray chose to plead guilty, admitting that she was, in fact, responsible for making the false bomb threat on AA Flight 1318.
United States Attorney Carmen M. Ortiz; Michael Ondocin, Supervisory Air Marshal in Charge of the Federal Air Marshal Service, Boston Field Office; Harold H. Shaw, Special Agent in Charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Boston Field Division; and Colonel Richard D. McKeon, Superintendent of the Massachusetts State Police, made the announcement today. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Kelly Begg Lawrence and John A. Capin of Ortiz’s Criminal Division.