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DJ Ashba defends controversial police helicopter ride

By:
Feb 16, 2014 | 4:14pm EST

Guns N' Roses guitarist Dj Ashba has opened up about the controversial helicopter ride he took in Las Vegas last year (13) which cost a police officer his job, insisting the trip was "approved" and "followed protocol". Last September (13), the rocker published a photograph of himself and his now-wife Nathalia Henao on Instagram.com along with a caption thanking the Las Vegas police department for "the most amazing" private helicopter tour over the city prior to his proposal. However, police Captain David O'Leary came under fire for arranging the flight on an official police helicopter, prompting a four-month investigation. After learning he would subsequently be demoted to the rank of lieutenant, O'Leary retired after serving 25 years in the force. Ashba has now spoken out about the incident, telling local Las Vegas news station Fox 5 that no rules were broken, saying, "They act as if we jumped a fence and stole a helicopter late at night, and that's not at all what happened. There's a lot of false information that was fed to the public. We followed protocol. It was an approved ride." He adds, "I'd taken a helicopter ride a year before, posted a thank you on my Instagram - not a peep. They offered up a ride again, and I said, 'Sure, that would be great. It's a big day for me.'" Ashba wed Henao on 23 September (13), just weeks after the controversy.

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