Delta passenger detained at LAX after opening exit door, activating emergency slide minutes before takeoff
A Delta Airlines passenger on a flight from Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) on Saturday was arrested for allegedly opening an emergency exit door aboard the plane and causing the plane’s emergency slide to be activated prior to takeoff.
According to Los Angeles Airport Police, at approximately 10 a.m. EST., an unidentified passenger, wearing a striped red and navy blue sweater with black pants, rushed to the front of the plane while the plane was pushing away from the gate and asked the flight attendant, “what do I do now?”
Passengers told FOX 11 that the flight attendant insisted that the man sit down, but he ran from the Delta Air Lines flight attendant and went to the plane’s emergency exit doors, turned the latch, opened the door, and slid down the deployed emergency slide.
The plane was forced to stop, and passengers told FOX 11 that the man jumped onto the back of a baggage cart, where luggage workers held him down until LAX Police got there.
“He is being taken to a local hospital for a mental evaluation,” Sgt. Devin Feldman said.
The Los Angeles Airport Police said that the FBI had been notified about the event.
“Airport Police responded and detained the passenger for further investigation. Due to the circumstances, FBI was notified,” Los Angeles Airport Police told Fox News Digital in a statement.
“Delta flight 1714 operating from Los Angeles to Seattle returned to the gate due to an unruly passenger. The aircraft was holding to taxi for takeoff when the passenger exited the aircraft and was initially detained by Delta staff ahead of being arrested by local law enforcement.” Delta Air Lines said in a statement to Fox News Digital. “Customers are being re-accommodated on a new aircraft, and we apologize for the inconvenience and delay in their travel plans.”
“Delta was great. The flight attendants were amazing,” said Gillian Sheldon, who was on the plane. She told FOX 11 that the whole thing happened so fast that no one had any time to react.
“You always tell yourself, when you see these things on TV, that I would have done this or that, but honestly, it was so quick, there was no way to react,” she said. “Just glad it didn’t happen when we were midair, or it would have been a whole different outcome.”
Following the incident, passengers on the Delta Air Lines plane were escorted off and moved to another plane. The flight was heading from LAX to Seattle, Washington and according to FlightAware.com the flight was 3 hours delayed due to the incident.
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