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Man Arrested on O'Hare Runway Claimed He Had a Private Jet: Prosecutors

By Emily Morris | November 17, 2013 4:49pm
 Ardell Walker, 23, of the 5200 block of West Van Buren Street.
Ardell Walker, 23, of the 5200 block of West Van Buren Street.
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Chicago Police Department

COOK COUNTY CRIMINAL COURTHOUSE — A man who was caught jumping a fence at O'Hare International Airport and running toward an American Airlines plane Saturday afternoon claimed he was there to catch his private jet to Miami, prosecutors said.

Ardell Walker, 23, of the 5200 block of West Van Buren Street, was charged with a felony count of criminal trespass in a restricted area of an airport and a misdemeanor count of resisting an officer.

Two airfield operations supervisors saw Walker walking onto the restricted runway area after he'd jumped a barbed wire fence at O'Hare, Assistant State's Attorney Jacqueline Kwilos said in court Sunday.

When police officers got to the scene, they saw Walker walking along the runway with his right hand in his pocket, according to Kwilos.

An officer ordered Walker to stop and show his hands, but he refused, Kwilos said.

Walker then began running toward an American Airlines plane as it was taxiing, Kwilos said, and a police sergeant and the air control supervisors chased after him.

Walker continued to charge the plane and wasn't stopped until he'd managed to get under the wing of the flight, Kwilos said. He was arrested about 3:15 p.m. Saturday, according to police.

Walker refused to put his hands behind his back, so the sergeant used force to arrest him, according to a police arrest report. A gash was noticed on Walker's leg when he was taken into a the police station, and the sergeant was treated for cuts on his hands, according to the report.

Walker told authorities that he'd jumped the fence to get to his private plane and head to Miami, Kwilos said.

Judge Adam Bourgeois Jr. ordered Walker held in lieu of $100,000 bail.