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August Busch IV's Helicopter Incident - Carlos Gamino
By Carlos Gamino

Former Anheuser-Busch CEO August Busch IV is now under investigation by St. Louis police for appearing “too intoxicated to take off” after his helicopter landed in an office park just outside the city in early July.

News from Attorney Carlos Gamino

Former Anheuser-Busch CEO Caught Intoxicated in a Helicopter

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St. Clair County State’s Attorney Brendan Kelly issued a statement saying his office is waiting for toxicology reports to come back after the incident before deciding whether to file charges against Busch.

According to police, Busch’s helicopter landed near several buildings in an office park in the early afternoon, and eight hours later, someone called them to let them know the pilot was too intoxicated to take off. The responding officer said that the rotors were spinning and the engine was “revving up” at the time—but when she turned on her emergency lights, the pilot cut the engine.

Officers don’t believe Busch was drunk—his field sobriety test indicated that he wasn’t intoxicated by alcohol—but they do believe he was under the influence of a controlled substance. Court documents describe him as “intoxicated,” “anxious,” “rambling,” and “unable to keep a single train of thought.”

His wife says he recently stopped taking the anti-anxiety medication that he normally takes, which may explain his behavior.

His history points to his use of illicit drugs, as well. In 1983, when Busch was in college, he allegedly left the scene of an accident that killed his 22-year-old companion. (He was never criminally charged in that incident because investigators allegedly lost all the evidence.) In 2010, his 27-year-old girlfriend was found dead in his St. Louis mansion; her cause of death was officially listed as a drug overdose.

In this case, Busch was held overnight in jail.

What Do You Think?

Have you kept up with this story? I’d love to hear your thoughts on whether you feel Busch’s last name subjects him to a different set of rules or if you think it’s all a big misunderstanding, so please feel free to share your opinion on my Facebook page or on Twitter.

Carlos Gamino