Kenneth Mazik sat in his black Jeep Grand Cherokee for several minutes before deciding to bust through the airport gates speeding around the runways at 80 mph into the path of an arriving plane.
His lawyer says that the 24-year-old Mazik is a troubled young man who was dealing with a variety of problems, reports The Associated Press. He claims that Mazik did not intend to injure anyone and it’s not even clear if Mazik had drank alcohol that morning, though there is a possibility he was under the influence of drugs — prescription or otherwise.
As you may know, "intent" is usually not a defense to a driving under the influence charge. It doesn't matter if you intended to have a blood alcohol level of 0.07, or did not intend for your prescription medication to interfere with your driving abilities. The fact is that if you are impaired and driving, you can be charged and convicted of a DUI.
Fortunately for Mazik, he is not facing DUI charges. As we wrote earlier this week, the City of Philadelphia decided to drop DUI charges against him, instead turning over the case to federal authorities. In the federal case, Mazik faces charges including disrupting airport service and endangering safety, reports the AP. For these charges, intent may matter and whether Mazik believed he was fleeing from demons may be a valid defense.
Kenneth Mazik is painted as a troubled young man fleeing from invisible foes in the Philadelphia airport DUI. While these may be ineffective, if entertaining, defenses to a DUI charge, Mazik's mindset may get him out of the federal charges.