A man who allegedly planned to steal and fly a commercial jet from Texarkana to Chicago for a July 4th rap concert has been found fit to proceed to trial.
Zemarcuis Devon Scott, 18, allegedly intended to take an American Eagle twin engine jet in the early hours of Independence Day to see rapper Famous Dex perform in Illinois, according to a probable cause affidavit and psychological evaluation report used to create the following account. Airport security personnel who noticed Scott jump a fence onto the property at about 2:30 a.m. immediately contacted local police.
When members of the Texarkana, Ark., Police Department arrived, Scott was allegedly sitting in the pilot's seat in the cockpit of the small commercial plane. Two of the three responding officers reportedly recognized Scott from earlier encounters.
Scott allegedly told investigators his lack of training as a pilot didn't concern him as he believed operating the aircraft could be simply accomplished by pulling levers and pushing buttons. At a hearing in August at which Scott pleaded not guilty to attempted commercial burglary and attempted theft of property, Managing Public Defender Jason Mitchell asked the court to order an evaluation of Scott's mental state to determine if he is competent to stand trial.
In a report filed Dec. 21 in Miller County, a psychologist with Southwest Arkansas Counseling and Mental Health Center found that Scott is competent. Scott understands the charges facing him, understands the criminality of the alleged conduct and has the ability to assist his lawyer in a defense, the report states.
Scott allegedly told the psychologist that he had been using synthetic marijuana for about a week preceding his arrest. Scott allegedly said he had been thinking about stealing a plane for about a month and had been watching the plane since 10 p.m. July 3 before throwing his bicycle in a ditch and heading for the jet more than four hours later.
Now that Scott has been found competent, the case can move toward resolution through a plea bargain or a trial. Scott is expected to appear for a pretrial hearing this month before Circuit Judge Carlton Jones. Chief Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Chuck Black is handling the case for the state.
Both of the charges facing Scott are punishable by three to 10 years in prison and a fine up to $10,000. Scott is currently being held in the Miller County jail. Bail is set at $25,000.