American Airlines flight 945 from Dallas (DFW) to Santiago, Chile (SCL) made an unscheduled stop on Monday night in Lima, Peru (LIM) to escort a unruly passenger off the plane. It all started when an economy passenger decided he wanted to sit in an unoccupied business seat and could not understand why he couldn’t “take his own upgrade” as the flight was already in the air. When the flight attendant refused, a fight broke out right in front of NY Mets right-hander LaTroy Hawkins. As per Newsday‘s interview with Hawkins:

“I saw that this guy kept coming up to the front, but I didn’t think anything of it. “They get to tussling and land in my lap,” Hawkins said. “Knocked over my ice cream sundae, knocked over the wine, everything all over me. I jump up, we grab his arm, I had one arm in the air and my knee in his back trying to keep him down because he keeps trying to move.” Hawkins used zip ties to restrain the passenger’s hands and feet. But sometime later, with most of the cabin asleep, Hawkins said the man got free from the restraints and caused another disturbance. This time Hawkins’ friends intervened first. Rodney Carter and Leonard Whittenberg subdued the passenger. Hawkins helped to again apply zip ties and tape. The second incident prompted a 4:16 a.m. emergency landing in Lima, Peru, where the troublesome passenger was taken into custody. Said Hawkins: “All we want from American Airlines is executive platinum for life.”

American Airlines spokesman Matt Miller confirmed two passengers on board Flight 945 from Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport to Santiago, Chile, assisted flight attendants in escorting an “unruly” passenger from the plane. The flight took off from Dallas at 9:45 p.m. CT Sunday and made the unscheduled stop in Lima, Peru, at 4 a.m. Monday, Miller said. “They were noncompliant, unruly, which happens on occasion,” Miller said about the passenger removed from the flight. “And when it does, sometimes we’ll divert a flight. For the safety of everybody on board, it’s much easier just to get that individual off the plane. And that’s what we did and turned it over to local law enforcement, and then the flight continued on.”

No word on that Executive Platinum status…

Hawkins Tweet

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Gene October 31, 2013 - 1:44 pm

It’s a pretty safe bet that Lifetime Executive Platinum status will not be forthcoming.

Mike October 31, 2013 - 2:57 pm

I can understand that!

DaninSTL October 31, 2013 - 3:14 pm

For helping the flight crew I might consider giving them lifetime elite of some sort. 🙂

ffi October 31, 2013 - 5:04 pm

All I got was a thank you letter from UA!

Anne October 31, 2013 - 7:52 pm

Well there’s always the fake PDF statement – kidding!

adam October 31, 2013 - 7:59 pm

@Anne – Hysterical!

Kenneth D. McClintock November 1, 2013 - 5:30 am

At least give him 8 frigging systemwide VIP Upgrades!


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