I’m not sure if it’s the summer heat, or COVID-19 madness or perhaps it’s just a bad set of coincidences, but passenger behavior is getting bad on the ground and in the air! I just posted the story and video of a man onboard an Alaska Airlines flight who threatened to kill everyone in the name of Jesus. Now, from Florida another crazy story and another dramatic video of a brawl at the gate. It’s an all out Spirit Airlines Fight. The video shows passengers fighting, kicking and throwing objects at Spirit Airlines employees in anger over a delayed flight.
Spirit Airlines Fight – Passengers Assaulted Gate Agents
The flight was scheduled to depart Fort Lauderdale headed to Philadelphia on Tuesday, July 14, however it was delayed. Once the delay was announced three female passengers became enraged at the notice of a late departure and began assaulting five Spirit employees. According to the Broward County Sheriff’s Office, the incident occurred at Gate G14. According to my Flightradar app, the flight (Spirit Airlines Flight 1004) was delayed for eighty minutes, so a little more than an hour.
We have all probably seen people get irate and even shout, yell or scream at agents when things didn’t go their way. That’s inappropriate in itself. But these three women went way beyond that level of anger. They actually assaulted the Spirit employees by throwing objects at them. In the video we see water bottles, phones, food items and even shoes being hurled towards the agents; most with their backs against a wall.
Full Combat – Passengers Versus Spirit Airlines Fight
At about 17 seconds into the clip, a black female, wearing a white top and dark slacks is seen passing under the ropes of the gate, headed to assault the agents. This angry member of the suspected threesome goes behind the gate desk and begins physically assaulting an employee face-to-face. She is quickly accompanied by other females who also head there to begin up close hand to hand combat.
Towards the end of the shared video several agents are seen trying to separate the assailants from the airline employees off the floor.
According to a filed police report:”The defendants intentionally struck the victims against their will with miscellaneous items, such as phones, shoes, full water bottles, metal boarding signs, and fast food.” This Spirit Airlines brawl ran the gamut of weapons and tools of combat. Ordinarily, the crowd goes ‘aaah’ with a saddened glumness, but not these women!
It’s really quite unbelievable to see that this escalated to such an uncontrolled brawl so quickly.
Here’s the full video posted on social media:
Yep, these folks are facing federal charges! In case they didn’t know the Department of Justice, has ruled that 49 U.S. Code § 44903 applies to anyone who assaults an airport ticket agent. A person charged with assault of an agent will face the same fines and prison time as if they had attacked a Transportation Security Administration agent or other law enforcement officer.
Passenger Also Accused of Theft
According to the Tennessean, the three passengers are Danaysha Dixon, 22; Keira Ferguson, 21; and Tamaya Wright, 20. If assault charges weren’t bad enough, it appears that one of the three charged women stole a cellphone from one of the airline employees. She placed the phone in her backpack. As a consequence, Wright faces an additional charge of petty theft.
COVID-19 Masks Not Worn by Suspects
I actually took the time to review a few images to identify some of the individuals involved. Interestingly, at least two of the three charged women are not wearing any type of protective masks. The Fort Lauderdale airport does require that all “individuals visiting, traveling through, or working in public areas of the airport’s terminals” wear protective masks. Spirit Airlines also requires passengers to wear masks at the gate, during boarding and during flight (except for limited times to consume food or drink.) Obviously, these three suspects are not to keen on following rules.
This Spirit Airlines fight reminds me of scenes I’ve witnessed in Asia. In this case, America just seems to be on edge right now. Okay, a delayed flight is potentially upsetting. However, to resort to this kind of lawless and flagrantly obnoxious behavior is uncalled for. Hopefully, after some time cooling their heels (oh wait, they threw their shoes away) in jail they’ll have an opportunity to reflect and feel remorseful for their actions.
Was a bit more than an hour delay worth all of this? In the current pandemic situation, I really empathize with the airline employees who have more to deal with on daily basis. They certainly didn’t deserve to be treated in this manner. In fact, no one should treat another like this incident shows. Let’s have some compassion and tolerance folks; it’s tough on everyone.
Perhaps airports really bring out the worst in people sometimes…
What do you make of these recent crazy incidents involving passengers?
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