Published On: Fri, Apr 15th, 2022

American Airlines flight diverted after ‘unruly passenger’ subdued


An American Airlines flight bound for Washington, D.C. had to be diverted to Kansas City on Sunday after crew members and passengers subdued an “unruly passenger” onboard, the airline said.

American Airlines said Flight 1775 had been headed from Los Angeles to Washington, D.C., when the passenger began “displaying erratic behavior.”

The passenger “was ultimately subdued by our crew and with the help of other passengers,” it said in a statement sent to NBC News early Monday morning. The airline did not provide further details.

One passenger on the flight, Mouaz Moustafa, shared video appearing to show the passenger being subdued on the floor.

In a series of Twitter posts, Moustafa said the passenger had attempted to enter the cockpit and open a flight door. He said a flight attendant had use a coffee pot to subdue the unruly passenger as the plane descended. American Airlines did not confirm those details.

The unruly passenger was subdued by crew members and passengers, American Airlines said.
The unruly passenger was subdued by crew members and passengers, American Airlines said.Courtesy of Mouaz Moustafa

The incident forced the flight to divert to Kansas City International Airport, with the plane landing at around 2:30 p.m. local time (3:30 p.m. ET). Local law enforcement were there to meet the plane on arrival, American Airlines said.

“We’re grateful to our crew members, who are consistently dedicated to the safety and care of our customers and who handled the circumstances with the utmost skill and professionalism,” the airline said. “We also appreciate the customers who stepped in to assist our crew.”

The incident comes after U.S. airlines reported a dramatic rise in disruptive or violent incidents in 2021, with the Federal Aviation Administration logging 5,981 “unruly passenger reports.” Most appeared to involve federal requirements that face masks be worn due to the pandemic, according to the FAA.

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