Fly With Your Pants Down, Lose Your License, Judge Rules

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An administrative-law judge has ruled that the FAA properly revoked the license of a man who allowed a sex act to be performed upon him as he flew a helicopter around San Diego.  The judge cited the pilot's likely inability to respond to a flight emergency, should one have arisen while his pants were down around his knees.

"The evidence clearly shows grossly reckless conduct on the part of the respondent," David Martz, ruled National Transportation Safety Board judge William Mullins.  By "evidence," he mostly meant a video of the incident that had surfaced, as all such videos do, on the Internet.  Judge Mullins had just reviewed the video in chambers, accompanied by Martz, his lawyer and FAA officials.  The viewing, which lasted about an hour, was probably not at all uncomfortable.

The other participant in the aerobatic maneuver was not named, but according to reports she has been identified as a Swedish adult film star.  Not only was she not acting as co-pilot, Judge Mullins ruled that she was probably blocking access to the controls at least part of the time, also a clear safety hazard.  (The possibility that she might have just been trying to work the foot pedals for him does not seem to have been explored.)  The third party who had apparently been filming the stunt was also not identified.

This was not the first incident that had affected Martz's helicopter license.  It had been suspended twice before, and revoked once, although those events dated back to the 1980s.  Witnesses testified that Martz has cleaned up his act (among other things) since the 2005 incident captured on video, but he also had to admit that just a month after that, he had hit a wire in Mexico as a result of careless flying that did not even involve a porn star.  And according to, Martz was also busted recently for allegedly flying his helicopter drunk and landing it in a residential area to pick up his client, Tommy Lee.

FAA attorney Lierre Green argued successfully that Martz's reckless actions "could have been disastrous," and even the defense witnesses ultimately had to agree.  Cross-examining Ruben Campos, another pilot who works for Martz's business, Green asked, "Would you fly around and have someone give you oral sex?"  "No, I would not," Campos said quietly.

I remind you, sir, that you are under oath.

Link: SF Gate