A passenger is giving an American Airlines flight crew praise for the way they handled a belligerent passenger on the flight from Los Angeles to Salt Lake City. The hostile behavior was documented by one of the passengers and was posted to social media on Monday.
The flight typically lasts an hour and a half, but for passengers on American Airlines flight 1802, it likely seemed much longer.
Video from the incident, which occurred during a flight from Los Angeles to Salt Lake City, shows a man growling like an animal as he struggles to put on a mask.
According to fellow passenger Dennis Busch, who filmed the meltdown, it began when the man “yelled at a woman of Asian ethnicity, telling her to sit down while she was standing up ‘to deal with a back issue,'” SLC’s Fox affiliate reported.
“He then told flight attendants that the woman and the person she was with ‘didn’t belong here,'” .
After asking him to calm down the man went into a complete meltdown of racist, sexist and belligerent comments, culminating in his arrest at the gate,” Busch wrote on Instagram. “We were lucky to have such a well trained crew who kept their cool throughout the flight!”
The video shows several police officers pulling the man out of his seat and arresting him after the plane landed.
Salt Lake City Police have identified the unruly passenger.
Airline staff described the man, later identified as 61-year-old Timothy Armstrong of Las Vegas, as being combative while on the flight. In one of three videos seen below, Armstrong is seen yelling at one of the members of the flight crew in the front of the plane. In another video, he appears to be growling as he places his face mask inside his mouth.
After the flight landed safely, Salt Lake City Police boarded the plane, took Armstrong into custody, and escorted him off the flight. Paramedics then transported the man to an area hospital. Salt Lake City Police say Armstrong received a criminal citation for public intoxication and disorderly conduct.
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