Sat, Jan 15, 2005
Judge rules drunk, jailed pilot not entitled to proceeds from
sale of his aircraft
A few days ago ANN updated you on the story of
John Salamone, the pilot who decided to have a few drinks, go bust
Philadelphia's Class B airspace and cap off the evening by buzzing
the airport's tower.
His airplane was impounded after he landed, and it was sold by
Montgomery County. Salamone and his wife then filed a lawsuit
demanding that the county pay them the proceeds of the sale, some
$34,000, because they needed the money and the wife shouldn't have
to be penalized for the actions of the husband.
County Judge Bernard Moore's reviewed the matter, and has
rendered his decision affirming the county can keep the money.
Assistant District Attorney James Staerk told the Morning Call
he was pleased with Judge Moore's decision. "This is very good for
us," he said. "We had a right to those proceeds because the plane
was used during the commission of a crime." He added, however, that
Salamone and his wife can still appeal the decision.
Salamone and his wife
had argued, through their attorney, Joseph Green, that the
government was not entitled to the money, which had been held in
escrow since the sale of the aircraft. Green stated that the
Salamone's concrete company had lost business, and Michelle
Salamone's financial situation was so grim she had to take a job
working as a waitress.
Staerk, on the other hand, painted a completely different
picture, that of an upper-middle-class family which paid thousands
to store the Piper aircraft while it was impounded, and have a
$2,300 mortgage on their home.
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