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Orchard Park man pleads guilty to assaulting woman during a United Airlines Flight

STAFF REPORTS

BUFFALO, N.Y. -- U.S. Attorney James P. Kennedy, Jr. announced today that Michael Hildebrand, 50, of Orchard Park, NY, pleaded guilty before U.S. Magistrate Judge Michael J. Roemer to assault within the special aircraft jurisdiction of the United States. The charge carries a maximum penalty of six months in jail and a fine of $5,000.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Jonathan P. Cantil, who is handling the case, stated that on December 20, 2017, the defendant was a passenger on a United Airlines flight from Newark, NJ to Buffalo, NY. During the flight, Hildebrand assaulted a woman by grabbing the victim’s groin area without consent.

The plea is the result of an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, under the direction of Special Agent-in-Charge Gary Loeffert, and the Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority Police, under the direction of Chief George Gast.

Sentencing is scheduled for September 7, 2018, at 11:00 a.m. before Judge Roemer.