DENVER - The lead singer of a band, arrested for trespassing in a restricted area at Denver International Airport, will likely avoid any punishment.
Video obtained exclusively by 7NEWS shows "Puddle of Mudd" lead singer, Wes Scantlin, riding on the oversized luggage carousel at DIA last month.
"It is a secured area of the airport and a regular passenger is absolutely not allowed to be back there," said DIA spokesman Heath Montgomery. "You are required to have a background check and an airport ID badge in order to be back there."
Despite going into an area that requires security clearance, he did not face any federal charges. He was arrested by Denver police and charged with trespassing.
Scantlin also had an outstanding warrant from 2006 for speeding 25 to 39 mph over the speed limit on Pena Boulevard, and driving without a license, according to public records.
He bonded out that night and arrived late to a schedule concert at Cassleman's Bar & Venue in Denver's River North neighborhood, north of Coors Field.
Puddle of Mudd is probably best known for the 2001 songs, "Blurry" and "She Hates Me."
The surveillance video captured Scantlin riding in one of the slots for oversized baggage.
It appears he's with someone shooting cell phone video. When he jumps off, an airline employee is walking nearby and another employee in a construction-like reflective vest starts to approach.
Two minutes later, he reappears near the carousel and hops onto another slot, taking him into the secured area.
"It's not a likely scenario in which someone would be able to get near an aircraft from this particular area," said Montgomery. "We are nowhere near any aircraft and it would take a pretty big effort to get to an aircraft from here. You would have to hike for, probably a couple of miles, and some tunnels that you weren't familiar with, in order to get out there."
--Entering secure areas are generally a local crime--
7NEWS asked federal law enforcement why it would not be a federal offense to enter a secured area at an airport. We were told that, generally, incidents in the main terminal and concourse areas are handled by the local jurisdiction.
"If you're not doing anything else, it really doesn't rise much above the level of a regulatory violation or trespassing," said former DIA assistant security director Jeff Price. "There's not a distinction in the regulations between, if you go into where the bags are sorted or where the bags or loaded, or if you walk out a door that accesses a commercial aircraft."
Federal agents generally don't get involved with crime at the airport unless it happens in-flight or if a plane is targeted.
"Most of our regulations have been focused on interference with flight crew, interference with aircraft operations," said Price.
Even though it was only misdemeanor trespassing for Scantlin to go behind the scenes in the baggage area, he could have accessed an area that could cause an air safety concern.
"Any airport, if you can access the baggage system, you have the potential to introduce a prohibited item or a bomb into somebody's bag that gets put onto an airplane," said Price. "Theoretically, the most he could do is put something in a bag that just goes right back outside to baggage claim."
"In over 20 years, this is really only the second instance that we can remember, here at the airport, of someone actually riding an oversize piece of baggage carousel into a secured area," said Montgomery.
Five days after the incident, a Photoshopped picture was posted on the Puddle of Mudd Facebook page showing Scantlin sitting amid luggage in a regular baggage carousel. The caption read, "I'm Sorry?" and was signed "Wes."
It was clearly sarcastic because this past Tuesday, Scantlin failed to show up for his arraignment on the trespassing charge, as well as a bond return hearing for his 2006 traffic ticket. He now has two warrants for his arrest in Colorado for failure to appear.
Unless he comes back to Denver and gets caught by police, he likely won't face any punishment. According to legal analysts who spoke with 7NEWS about high profile defendants, it's not because he's a celebrity, but because the offenses are considered minor.
7NEWS found that this was not his first run-in with police at an airport.
In 2012, he was on a JetBlue flight from Boston to Los Angeles that had to be diverted to Austin, Texas. Cell phone video posted online showed him being taken off the plane in handcuffs.
According to the police report obtained by 7NEWS, he was arrested for public intoxication. The plane was diverted because of an, "unruly and intoxicated passenger who was interfering with flight crew and causing nervousness in passengers and crew members."
He was served "a couple of alcoholic drinks" during the flight and had admitted to have alcohol before the flight. He was refused a third drink in-flight. According to the report, "flight attendants stated Scantlin became angry at the decision and demanded to have authorities meet him in LAX and stated the flight attendant looked like a killer and that the flight attendant wanted to kill him. Passengers stated Scantlin was unable to rationally have a conversation."
The report states that, "restraints were passed out among flight attendants during the flight due to Scantlin becoming so angry and the fear of him being a danger to the passengers and the flight crew."
He graduated an eight-hour alcohol and drug awareness and education class and donated $150 to the local Meals on Wheels.
If he were to be arrested in Denver for his warrants, he would have to post a $250 bond to be released from his trespassing charge, and $400 bond for his 2006 speeding ticket.
Puddle of Mudd has no immediate future tour stops listed for Colorado.