DENVER - Mark Michael Bote, 23, of Thornton was charged Monday with one count of false information and threats while aboard Frontier Airlines Flight 601 en route from Knoxville, Tenn. to Denver.
On June 14 at 7:20 p.m., the FBI was notified of an in-flight disturbance aboard Frontier Airlines Flight 601 en route from McGhee Tyson Airport in Knoxville to Denver International Airport. Federal agents and task force officers responded to the airport based on the notification.
On board the flight, one passenger noticed Bote seemed nervous, was shaking, had his eyes closed and was rocking back and forth. A second passenger also noticed that Bote looked nervous and that his eyes were glazed over.
When Bote took his seat, he kept his backpack on. A flight attendant asked that he remove it. He put it under the seat in front of him but would not let completely go of it.
Later in the flight, a flight attendant asked Bote if he was ok. He reply with the word "bomb" and some other words the flight attendant couldn't make out. The flight attendant confirmed with him twice to make sure he knew he was saying the word "bomb."
A third passenger on board who sat next to defendant noted that Bote spent a majority of the flight sleeping. When he suddenly awoke Bote allegedly said "help me, help me." The flight attendant asked what was wrong, and Bote responded "There's a bomb. There's a bomb." He was shaking as he held the backpack. Later, Bote's backpack was taken from him.
Toward the end of the flight, the flight attendants discussed the situation. When Bote said he had a bomb in his carry-on bag, the flight attendants initiated bomb procedures which included moving passengers and bags.
One of the passengers advised the flight attendants that she was traveling with Bote, and was a member of his church group. They had been in Tennessee helping build a church. She stated that the defendant was not well.
Further investigation revealed Bote thought someone was stalking him. He was holding on to the backpack because he thought someone put a bomb in it because it felt heavier than it had previously. Bote was arrested pending federal charges.
If convicted of false information and threats, he faces not more than five years in federal prison and up to a $250,000 fine.
Bote is scheduled to make his initial appearance before U.S. Magistrate Judge Craig B. Shaffer at 2 p.m. on Tuesday where he will be advised of his rights and the charges pending against him.
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