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U.S. Skier Kicked Off Team After Alleged Midair Urination Incident

The Associated Press is reporting that the U.S. Ski Team has kicked Robert "Sandy" Vietze off its development squad for what the team said were "conduct violations."

The New York Post reports that Vietze, 18, was accused of boarding a JetBlue flight drunk and then urinating on a fellow passenger.

Over the past few days the story of JetBlue Flight 166 has ignited plenty of discussion. In its original story about the flight, The Post reported that the man had urinated on an 11-year-old girl and that the girl's father had caught him "midstream." Flight attendants had to separate the two of them.

ABC's Good Morning America,which confirms it was indeed Vietze on the plane, reports he had at least eight drinks before he got on the cross-country flight and he told police that he "was drunk and I did not realize I was doing it."

The AP reports no one is answering the phone at Vietze's home, but the Post says his mother had no comment outside their Vermont home:

"We have no comment, nothing to say," snapped Vietze's mother, Abigail, as they hauled luggage and ski equipment from a gray BMW.

Vietze had taken the red-eye flight from Portland, Ore., to JFK Wednesday on his way home from a weeklong training camp with the US Ski Team at Mount Hood in Oregon.

It was lousy luck for his young victim, who was flying with her sister and cancer-stricken father on a trip to see her grandmother on eastern Long Island for the first time since his diagnosis.

Vietze was considered one of the country's premiere skiers. But it's likely that after this incident his Olympic hopes have are dashed. A spokesman for the U.S. Attorney's office told the AP a case is pending.

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Eyder Peralta
Eyder Peralta is NPR's East Africa correspondent based in Nairobi, Kenya.