After an alleged assault by a passenger on a flight by American Airlines from New York City, New York to Orange County, California, a flight was diverted to Denver.
American Airlines Flight 976 diverted from John Wayne Airport after a male passenger thought to be traveling first class allegedly punched a female flight attendant twice during a dispute about masks, according to witnesses.
Mackenzie Rose was a passenger on board the flight and said that she saw the flight attendant walk past after the incident with ‘blood on her mask’. However, a photo shared on Twitter seemed to show crew members and passengers ducttaping the man to the seat.
American Airlines issued a statement after the plane arrived in Denver. They expressed their outrage and promised to ban the individual from future American Airlines services.
The plane was stopped by police at the gate. They immediately arrested the suspect, who has not been identified.
According to Flightview, the flight took off from JFK Airport just prior to 5pm E.T. It landed in Colorado at 6.43pm Denver time.
American Airlines flight 976 was diverted from John Wayne Airport to Denver International because a male passenger, believed to be in first class, allegedly punched an attendant twice in the face during a dispute over masks, according to witnesses. (Flight 976 pictured at airport).
A passenger snapped a photo and shared it on Twitter. It showed crew members and passengers rallying to secure the man a seat on an airplane using duct tape after the assault.
Mackenzie Rose (pictured), American Airlines flight 976 passenger, said: “I understand that he actually punched [sic] twice. She had blood on her mask, and I saw her walk down the aisle.
Witnesses claim that the assault took place when a male passenger traveling in first or second class was asked by a flight attendant if he wanted to wear a mask. This request was denied.
Witnesses say that the male passenger got into a heated argument and hit the female flight attendant in the face with a pair punches.
Mackenzie Rose, American Airlines passenger on flight 976, stated that if you don’t feel comfortable wearing a mask, then you shouldn’t fly.
“I understand that the man punched her twice. I saw her walk down the aisle afterward and she had blood all over her mask.
“In terms of men hitting on women, it’s completely absurd and ridiculous.”
Rose stated that she had the impression that there might have been a substance or alcohol involved in the incident.
A photo taken by a passenger was shared on Twitter and appeared to show crew members as well as other passengers rallying to ensure the man got a seat on the plane using ducttape after the assault.
Police arrived at the gate and arrested the suspect immediately
American Airlines issued a statement after the plane arrived at Denver International (pictured), expressing their outrage and promising to ban the person, who has not been identified, from future American Airlines services.
The airline confirmed its intention to prosecute the person, who it said was arrested by law enforcement at Denver International Airport’s gate following the safe landing.
“We are outraged by reports of what occurred on board,” said American Airlines. American Airlines said that violence against team members is not tolerated.
“We have contacted local law enforcement and FBI and are working with them in order to ensure that they have all the information necessary. Although the incident involved will prevent the victim from flying with American Airlines in future, we will not rest until he is properly prosecuted.
According to the airline, the flight attendant who was attacked was taken to a local hospital after landing.
Passengers have a variety of opinions about whether her nose was fractured by the punches. However, there is no confirmation from the airline or airport authorities.
“We thank our crews for their prompt action and professionalism to ensure safety of their fellow passengers on board,” the airline stated.
“Our thoughts and prayers are with the injured flight attendant and all of her crew members. We will be there to support them.
The airline said: ‘We have engaged local law enforcement and the FBI and we are working with them to ensure they have all the information they need. American Airlines will not allow the person involved in this incident to travel on American Airlines’ future flights. However, we won’t be satisfied until he is tried to the fullest extent of the law. (file pic)