Man jailed for calling in bomb threat to catch flight

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A man has been sentenced to one year in jail for calling in a bomb threat at the Kelowna airport in an attempt to stop a plane from leaving without him.

Michael Joseph Paul Howells, 37, made the call in October 2014 because he was running late to catch a WestJet flight from Kelowna to Fort McMurray, where he worked.

Kelowna RCMP and emergency personnel rushed to the airport after police received a report of a possible threat to an outbound flight headed to Calgary.

Passengers on the flight, which originated from Edmonton, were held for more than two hours as police officers with sniffer dogs searched the aircraft.

No bomb was ever found, but the RCMP managed to trace the call to Howells’ cell phone and he was arrested at the airport departure lounge and taken away in handcuffs by police.

At the time Howells was charged with uttering threats, public mischief, possession of a controlled substance and endangering aircraft by false information and mischief.

He later pleaded guilty to two counts of mischief and was sentenced Wednesday in Kelowna to one year in jail and fined $3,844.88.

At the time of the incident investigators said Howells was originally from Alberta and living in Summerland, B.C.

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