HomeLatest NewsShock and Speculation Surround Boeing Whistleblower's Tragic Demise in Truck

Shock and Speculation Surround Boeing Whistleblower’s Tragic Demise in Truck

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Police in South Carolina say that John Barnett was found dead Friday in his truck with a “self-inflicted” gunshot wound. He had worked for Boeing for 32 years. The coroner confirmed his death on Monday.

Boeing has recently made headlines with several safety issues.

Barnett, a former quality manager at Boeing’s North Charleston Plant, has been warning about some frightening quality issues since his retirement in 2017.

Barnett died during a break between depositions for a whistleblower lawsuit. He had claimed that under-pressure employees were fitting substandard parts on aircraft assembly lines.

He claimed that, in some cases second-rate components were removed from scrap bins and fitted onto planes being built, to avoid delays. The FAA reviewed his concerns in 2017 and required Boeing to take action.

Brian Knowles, his lawyer, said that he had given a deposition in the case to Boeing’s attorneys just last week.

The whistleblower was preparing to testify Saturday at his AIR21, but he did not appear. AIR21 is the FAA’s Whistleblower Protection Program.

Brian Knowles, Barnett’s attorney, described Barnett’s tragic death, adding:

I did not finish the cross-examination yesterday (Friday). We agreed to continue at 10 am this morning. [Co-counsel] Rob (Turkewitz) kept calling and his phone went to voicemail.

The South Carolina jurist continued, “We asked the hotel to make sure he was okay.”

They found him dead in his truck from a supposed’ self-inflicted shot. We drove to the Hotel and spoke with both the police and coroner.

Boeing released a statement stating, “We’re saddened by the passing of Mr. Barnett, and we send our condolences to his family and close friends.” The statement did not mention the circumstances surrounding his death, or his allegations.

Boeing aircraft have been plagued by several troubling problems in recent years. One of the most infamous was a door stopper that blew out mid-flight.

Jennifer Homendy, Chair of the NTSB, updated the public on Sunday evening about the agency’s investigations into an incident that took place Friday night. A door plug came loose on an Alaska Airlines plane during an “explosive-depressurization event” in Portland, Oregon.

Homendy’s revelations are alarming to say the least. She stated that records showed the plane had received depressurization warnings three times before, including two days before the incident.

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