Boeing whistleblower found dead in his truck — on same day he was supposed to talk to lawyers

As yet another Boeing plane experienced a "technical event" over the weekend that caused 50 injuries, Boeing's whistleblower, was found dead in his truck on Saturday in South Carolina. He had just been giving evidence against Boeing in a lawsuit days before his death.

John Barnett, a former Boeing employee of 32 years who retired as a quality manager in 2017, later spoke out against Boeing's 787 Dreamliner, telling the Corporate Crime Reporter that "they started ignoring safety issues," including the aircraft's compromised electrical system and faulty oxygen masks — 25% that "don't work properly."

The 62-year-old former quality manager also admitted to the CCR that he had warned his family against flying on a Dreamliner. "As far as the 787, I would change flights before I would fly a 787," he said. "I've told my family — please don't fly a 787. Fly something else. Try to get a different ticket. I want the people to know what they are riding on."

On Saturday, Barnett was supposed to show up for further questioning in relation to the case against the company. He never showed up, and was later found dead in the parking lot of his hotel in Charleston County. The cause of his death was reported to be "self-inflicted," which police are investigating.

From BBC:

In 2019, Mr Barnett told the BBC that under-pressure workers had been deliberately fitting sub-standard parts to aircraft on the production line.

He later told the BBC that workers had failed to follow procedures intended to track components through the factory, allowing defective components to go missing.

He said in some cases, sub-standard parts had even been removed from scrap bins and fitted to planes that were being built to prevent delays on the production line. …

Mr Barnett said he had alerted managers to his concerns, but no action had been taken.

He accused [Boeing] of denigrating his character and hampering his career because of the issues he pointed out – charges rejected by Boeing.

Boeing has denied his accusations and claimed it "was saddened to hear of Mr Barnett's passing," according to the BBC.