Michael Haak, 60, was sentenced by U.S. Magistrate Judge J. Mark Coulson Friday and ordered to pay $5,000.
“It started as a consensual prank between me and the other pilot,” Haak said during the hearing. “I never imagined it would turn into this in a thousand years.”
The flight took place in August of 2020, when Haak “disrobed” en route from Philadelphia to Orlando, as he watched pornography on a laptop in the cockpit, which prosecutors said is “not the kind of aberrant behavior that anyone should accept.”
“As the plane continued its flight, Haak further engaged in inappropriate conduct in the cockpit, as the first officer continued to perform her duties as an assigned aircrew member,” federal prosecutors said in a statement.
Haak eventually pleaded guilty to intentionally committing a lewd, indecent or obscene act in a public place in April, shortly after retiring. His attorney, Michael Salnick, said he “offers no excuses.”
“The embarrassment and resulting publicity of this incident has in and of itself been humbling to Michael Haak and has served as punishment in many ways,” he wrote.
Southwest reportedly “ceased paying Mr. Haak any benefits he was entitled to receive as a result of his separation from (the airline),” according to a spokesperson.