Man cited for unruly behavior on flight from LA to SLC
SALT LAKE CITY – A man was cited for public intoxication after becoming unruly on a flight from the Los Angeles International Airport to the Salt Lake City International Airport.
“More than halfway through the flight, this gentleman started causing a commotion,” said Dennis Busch who was also on the flight.
Witnesses said the man began confronting the people sitting in the row in front of them, telling them things like, “they don’t belong here.”
“I inferred quite a bit into that ‘they don’t belong here,'” Busch said. “It was a couple of Asian descent, and that was very gut-wrenching to see, and it was kind of hard to process in the moment.”
Busch said he then turned his attention to the flight crew, calling them power-hungry and swearing at them.
Busch started recording the man, who can be heard saying, “What? What? Are you going to kick me off this flight?”
The man can also be seen flashing an obscene gesture to the flight crew and yelling, “God Bless America!”
Witnesses said the man began making strange noises while ignoring orders to sit down, but that the flight crew was able to keep passengers calm.
“Which I think made all the difference,” Busch said. “I never would say that I felt physically in danger, but it was just the unknown of what he was capable of that induced a lot of anxiety in all the passengers.”
When the plane landed, the man was escorted from the plane and taken to the hospital.
The spokesperson for the Salt Lake City International Airport said the man was not arrested, adding that American Airlines would have more information.
In a statement, American Airlines said, in part, “The flight landed safely at SLC where local law enforcement removed the disruptive passenger from the aircraft. We thank our crew for their professionalism and our customers for their understanding.”
The flight had 162 passengers on board, along with six crew members.
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