A Pilot With A Sordid Past, Authorities Arrest Missing Drug Pilot Barrington Slack


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A Pilot With A Sordid  Past, Authorities Arrest Missing Drug Pilot Barrington Slack

By Eddy Metcalf

November 29, 2011 - On Monday at about 4 PM, Waller County Sheriff’s Office Deputies and Department of Homeland Security Agents arrested Barrington Carl Slack as he was leaving from Carinos Italian Restaurant, East Humble, Texas. Slack, 33, was identified as the pilot of the twin engine aircraft that crashed landed at the Houston Executive Airport in Waller County on November 21, in which authorities could not locate the pilot of an aircraft that was filled with marijuana. 

We now have learned Slack has a sordid past. Back on October 21, 2010, Slack departed Covington Municipal Airport in a Rockwell International 112TC aircraft, N1154J as pilot that he owned under the company name, Kalunji Aviation Group LLC. He climbed up to altitude, put on his parachute and jumped out of the aircraft. The Rockwell International crashed landed near Waynesboro, Georgia.  

Slack reported to the FAA he had picked up the airplane on this day after some maintenance work had been done on the plane and he was going to fly it back L.B. Owens Airport in Richland County, South Carolina.

Slack said the airplane tanks were topped off, completed a preflight, engine run-up, and did his pre-takeoff checklist prior to takeoff. There were no anomalies. Slack performed 3 touch-and-go landings at Covington Municipal Airport before departing for L.B. Owens Airport. 

Once en route, Slack noticed that the elevator control was "stiff" as he completed an altitude change. Then, the yoke would no longer move fore and aft, and he then realized that he had lost elevator control of the aircraft. Slack further stated that he had aileron control and could turn left and right, but altitude changes could only be made by increasing or decreasing engine power. Eventually, he lost aileron control, and could only perform shallow turns with rudder inputs. 

Slack declared an emergency over the radio to air traffic control (ATC), and was provided with radar vectors to Augusta Regional Airport (AGS), Augusta, Georgia. He attempted to troubleshoot the problem over the radio with ATC and other pilots on his assigned frequency, and then "started putting on a parachute I had on board." 

The pilot made multiple approaches but could not complete the landing before he began to run out of daylight, and his fuel state became critical. He maneuvered the airplane south of the airport towards a wooded area "away from homes." About 1,500 feet above ground level, the airplane's fuel supply was exhausted, the engine stopped producing power, and the pilot parachuted from the airplane. 

Slack reported that in July 2010, “almost the complete instrument panel” had been stolen from his airplane. A statement from the pilot/owner’s insurance company revealed that the pilot was compensated for the loss of his instruments. 


An examination of the wreckage was performed at the crash site by FAA aviation safety inspectors. All major components were accounted for at the scene, and no evidence of pre-accident mechanical anomalies was noted. The wreckage was moved to a recovery facility and an NTSB senior air safety investigator performed a detailed examination of the wreckage. 

There was a significant amount of impact crushing of the cockpit that prevented investigators from manipulating the cockpit controls “as found.” The cockpit was cut and pried apart to gain access. All elevator cables were connected to the elevator arms on the control yoke. The upper elevator arm was bent about 45 degrees. The lower arm was undamaged. The control yoke was then removed by cutting it in half. The left control yoke cross-tube was fractured at the weld point on the control yoke column due to impact and overstress. 

The empennage was cut from the aft fuselage during recovery of the wreckage. While impact damage was evident, the elevator and rudder remained attached. The elevator cables were also cut during wreckage recovery but remained attached to the elevator bellcrank and the connections were in good condition. The pushrod from the elevator bellcrank to the elevator horn was attached and was in good condition. The horn and bellcrank moved freely with no binding evident. 

The elevator trim actuators were examined, and each actuator was connected to its respective trim tab. The trim tabs were found in the full tab down positions. The chain drive was actuated manually and the chain moved from stop-to-stop freely and showed no evidence of a lack of lubrication. In summary, the examination of the empennage revealed no evidence of any binding or restriction of movement of the elevator or elevator trim surfaces. 

Examination of the instruments mounted in the instrument panel revealed that the serial numbers on the air pressure instruments matched the serial numbers of the air pressure instruments that were installed in the airplane when it was purchased by the pilot/owner, and later reported stolen in July, 2010. 

Slack exited the airplane wearing a Softie emergency parachute. The pilot was asked how it was that a parachute was on board, why he purchased one, and where his training was obtained. When asked if he was a military parachutist, he said no, but stated that he had served in the United States Marines as an infantryman. He said that he had previously owned an L39 jet trainer manufactured in the former Czechoslovakia. The pilot said he sold the jet, but bought the parachute so that he could get instruction in the jet from its current owner, as the ejection seats in the jet were disabled. 

According to the owner/instructor, when he asked the pilot why he needed an emergency parachute, "He stated he was a pilot flying out of Dobbins [AFB] and that he flew L-39 [jets], acting as the “rabbit” for other Marine pilots to chase him around the sky and do the dog fights “Top Gun” style of training. The only thing I thought strange was he had not gone to jump school and stated it was not required for the pilots. (That was what prompted his desire to try his parachute.) He also indicated during the conversation that the planes he was flying for the Marines did not have ejection seats and if he needed to get out, he would have to climb out."

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