Unruly Passenger Causes United Flight To Divert To Colorado <





Unruly Passenger Causes United Flight To Divert To Colorado

By Daniel Baxter

January 24, 2010 - United Airlines Flight 223 passenger attempts to open exit door in aircraft at 30,000 feet. On Saturday United Airlines Flight 223 departed Dulles International Airport Washington, D.C., at or about 3:30 PM for McCarran International Airport in Las Vegas Nevada. Flight 223 was clear by air traffic control to climb and maintain 30,000 feet.  

About 1 hour and 15 minutes into the flight around 4:45 PM a male passenger, 6 feet tall, 270 pounds with blond hair and unshaved face, who had been consuming alcohol on and before the flight rose from his seat in the coach section, grab his two carryon bags and then proceeded to walk to the front of the plane. The scruffy looking man then began banging on the cockpit door. The pilots refused hi entry, the passenger then attempted to open an exit door while the plane was in flight.  


The unruly passenger then again banged on the cock pit door that when a passenger in first class seating, Earl Stafford grabbed the unruly passenger by the arms and then called for help. Several passengers came to his aid and assisted to restrain the passenger. The passenger was then placed into a near by seat, restrained into his seat with the seatbelt while passengers in adjacent seating where moved out of harms way. One passenger, Art Thomm then sat on unruly passenger until the plain landed and police could take control.  

After the unruly passenger was restrained he was questioned by the flight crew. He was asked what he was in his carryon bags. The unruly passenger stated “You'll see."  

At about 5:15 PM the pilots declared an emergency with air traffic control. The pilots informed ATC that they had an unruly passenger onboard. The Airbus A320 with 129 passengers and five crew members onboard was immediately diverted to Denver International Airport, Denver, Colorado.  

The Airbus A320 taxied into its gate where FBI and TSA agents boarded the aircraft and took the unruly passenger into custody. Passengers were questioned by the FBI and TSA. One passenger who was interviewed stated the unruly passenger thought he was on the wrong flight and he wanted to get off the aircraft. After unruly passenger was questioned by FBI and RSA, he was transferred to a hospital for an evaluation.

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