A jet fuel driver, seen drunkenly stumbling and falling on the job in surveillance video, pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor DUI charge Friday after an officer found two empty beer cans in the tanker he was driving, according to Harbor Police.
James Stewart, 56, admitted to driving a 10,000 gallon jet fuel tanker while intoxicated on April 16 at the San Diego International Airport. He was arrested with a blood alcohol content of 0.24, three times the legal limit to drive.
Airport Authority surveillance video, obtained by NBC 7 Investigates through the state’s public record law, shows Stewart next to a tanker, parked by a Delta plane. According to Harbor Police, Stewart intended to pull the vehicle up to the plane to fuel it, but he was so drunk, he tried to refuel the jet with an empty tanker.
In the video, Stewart is seen walking from the truck, stumbling and then falling to the ground with his legs flying in the air. When he gets back on his feet, he tries to climb into the tanker, but an officer, who was alerted by a co-worker, guides him away.
After taking him into custody, a Harbor Police officer found two empty, 24-ounce cans of Steel Reserve beer on the floor board of the tanker.
The jet fuel company that hired Stewart, ASIG, said he is no longer employed there.
Stewart decided to change his plea during a readiness hearing, prosecuted by the City Attorney's Office.
NBC 7 Investigates is working for you. If you have more information about this or other story tips, contact us: (619) 578-0393, NBC7Investigates@nbcuni.com. To receive the latest NBC 7 Investigates stories subscribe to our newsletter.