Denver pays $300K to pilot wrongfully arrested for being nude in hotel room
The city of Denver has agreed to pay $300,000 to a United Airlines pilot who was arrested last year for standing naked in a hotel window.
The Denver Post reports the payout to Capt. Andrew Collins is a settlement to a lawsuit he filed against the city for wrongful arrest.
On Sept. 20, 2018, Collins, who has been with United for 22 years, was staying in a 10th-floor room at the Westin Hotel at Denver International Airport. Around the time of his arrest, Collins told the Post he had been awake for over 30 hours straight and got up around 10:30 a.m.
“I was getting ready for a shower and was talking on the phone,” he said. “It was a beautiful morning, and I opened the curtains to my window. I couldn’t see the terminal.”
Well, the terminal could see him right back. In all his glory.
“The suspect did open the window to his hotel room, which overlooks the hotel plaza,” the police report said, “and in full view of the public did stand in his window fully nude, exposing himself and his genitalia to the general public.”
The Post said guests in the airport lobby reported seeing the nude pilot and accused him of touching himself.
Police showed up at Collins’ hotel room, the Post reports. Collins said the police had their guns drawn when he opened the door. The Post reports the police handcuffed Collins and took him to an airport jail, charged with indecent exposure. However, the charge was dismissed in March by a judge, at the recommendation of the Denver District Attorney’s Office.
Collins, who was suspended for six months from United, has since returned to his job.
“I wish the DIA Westin would have called me and let me know I was putting on a show in my birthday suit,” Collins said in a statement in March. “I had no idea.”
“A respected family man and outstanding veteran aviator, Capt. Collins was the victim of an unjustified and warrantless entry into his hotel room followed by an arrest and days of miserable incarceration,” his attorney Craig Silverman said in a statement Monday. “Beyond anything else, Andy Collins is a terrific person who has never been in trouble a day in his life and is the furthest thing from the kind of person who commits a sex-related crime.”
The Post reports the settlement check came from the airport’s insurer, AG Aerospace Insurance Services, Inc.
Silverman said the Westin, managed by Marriott, should warn their guests about privacy issues like this.
“They have a hotel where customers really should be warned that people can see in their room even though you can’t see people looking at you,” Silverman said. “A lot of high-end hotels even tint their windows.”
Chris Pastrick is a Tribune-Review digital producer. You can contact Chris at 412-320-7898, [email protected] or via Twitter .