*61-year-old Joe Rickey Hundley, of Hayden, Idaho, pleaded guilty this week to slapping a black toddler for crying on the plane he was on.
The toddler Hundley slapped was the 1-year-old (adopted) son of Jessica Bennett who was on the flight from Minneapolis to Atlanta. According to The Smoking Gun, Hundley could face up to a one year in prison and a $100,000 fine.
Bennett told the authorities that her son was crying due to changes in altitude during the flight when Hundley “told her to shut that (N-word) baby up,” FBI agents told the Associated Press. When the toddler proceeded to cry, Hundley slapped him in the face.
According to Bennett’s statement, Hundley “reeked of alcohol” and was shocked to hear him call out a racial slur towards her son. She then sked him “What did you say?” she says he “fell onto my my face and his mouth was in my ear and he said it again, but even more hateful.”
After the incident, Hundley made an original plea of not guilty to federal assault charges in March. His lawyer’s defense was that his client was distraught during the flight because he was traveling to take his only child, overdosed on insulin, off of life support.
Hundley’s trial was scheduled to begin Thursday, but on Wednesday, he changed his plea to guilty.
When the investigation began, Hundley was suspended from his job as president of Unitech Composites and Structures in Idaho.