Feb. 23—Part of Southwest Airlines’ slogan is: “Low fares. Nothing to hide.”
One passenger apparently took the second part a little too seriously during a flight over New Mexico on Friday.
The man, who allegedly exposed himself, urinated in a corner and tried to fight two flight attendants, got a first-class ticket to jail when the plane was diverted to the Albuquerque International Sunport.
Samson Hardridge, who is 33 or 34 years old, is charged in federal court with interference with flight crew members and attendants in the Feb. 18 incident.
Hardridge’s attorney did not respond to a request for comment.
According to a criminal complaint filed in U.S. District Court:
Hardridge was a passenger on a Southwest flight from Dallas to Burbank, California, when he got up to use the bathroom, which was occupied. A flight attendant asked him to wait in the aisle and, Hardridge, with his hands in his pants and a question of his own, asked if she wanted to see his genitals, “to which they declined.”
Hardridge then went to the galley door and began to urinate “in the corner of the aircraft” before the flight attendant told him that was not allowed. Hardridge became “very hostile,” yelling and threatening two flight attendants, calling them “dumb (expletive).”
The flight attendants asked Hardridge to clean up his urine and, as he continued to yell, told him to go back to his seat. The flight attendants “feared for their safety and that of the flight” due to Hardridge’s unpredictable behavior and alerted the pilot, who landed the plane in Albuquerque.
Drew Seaser of Colorado says Hertz had him arrested for allegedly stealing a car in Georgia despite never renting a car from the company or visiting the state of Georgia. He’s one of more than 200 people who say they were arrested, charged or sent to jail after Hertz told police they stole a rental car. CBS News’ consumer investigative reporter Anna Werner reports.
A woman who drifted off to sleep in her seat during a United Airlines flight from Las Vegas to Virginia opened her eyes to find the man next to her touching her breast, federal officials said.
When she yelled “get away from me,” the man hopped out of his seat and headed to the back of the plane, where he told a flight attendant he “sexually assaulted the woman sitting next to him,” according to prosecutors.
Ivan Lopez, Jr., 26, is now facing a charge of “abusive sexual contact aboard an aircraft in flight” after the Dec. 24 flight bound for Washington Dulles International Airport, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Virginia said in a Jan. 19 news release. If found guilty, he could face up to two years in prison.
McClatchy News reached out to Lopez’s lawyer for comment on Jan. 19 and was awaiting a response.
“The indictment alleges that she awoke to Lopez repeatedly rubbing her right breast. When the passenger opened her eyes, she allegedly observed Lopez leaning over her and his right hand was placed on her right breast,” officials said in the news release.
The woman told an investigating FBI special agent that Lopez’s hand touching her breast was “not accidental,”, the affidavit states. She accused Lopez of touching her for roughly 10 seconds.
A flight attendant told the FBI agent that Lopez admitted to grabbing the woman when he went to the back of the plane and “further stated that he thought he was in trouble and that he was sorry.”
Then, the flight attendant said they immediately moved Lopez’s seat from the 12th row to the 21st row to keep him away from the woman. After, Lopez apologized to the flight attendant again and said “that he had a disability,” according to the affidavit.
When the FBI agent interviewed Lopez the same day, he said “he wanted to get the woman’s attention by poking her on her right shoulder, so that he could ask her what she was listening to through her headphones,” the agent wrote.
However, the agent wrote, Lopez said turbulence caused him to “accidentally” poke “her breast.”
The official concluded in court documents they believe Lopez committed “a simple assault.”
McClatchy News has reached out to the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Virginia for further information.
The office’s news release also said another man, Elias Fethamlk — who was aboard a separate flight headed to Washington Dulles International Airport — is charged “with one count of interference with flight crew members and attendants, and one count of simple assault.”
Fethamlk, 40, is accused of assaulting a flight attendant on an Ethiopian Airlines flight on Dec. 2, according to prosecutors.
McClatchy News reached out to Fethamlk’s lawyer on Jan. 19 and was awaiting a response.
A trio of unruly would-be passengers at John F. Kennedy Airport viciously beat down two Delta Air Lines employees after a flight crew decided they were too drunk and belligerent to board a flight to Puerto Rico, federal prosecutors said Thursday.
Long Island residents Jordan Nixon, 21, Janessa Torres, 21, and Johanna Zavala, 44, were set to board a midday flight to San Juan, Puerto Rico on Sept. 22 after their morning flight reservation was changed.
In the intervening hours, the women ordered nine drinks at an airport bar and showed up to their gate visibly drunk, according to prosecutors.
Zavala had difficulty walking, while Nixon smelled of alcohol and held a to-go cup filled with an orange liquid that also smelled like alcohol, the feds said.
A Delta gate employee informed the flight crew of the three passengers’ state, and a flight crew member and the captain of the flight determined that the trio would not be allowed to board, according to court papers filed by prosecutors.
A security officer was called to inform the three women, and told the group that while they wouldn’t be allowed on the flight, they could rebook on another flight later that afternoon, prosecutors said.
But the women refused to leave the jetway, and began cursing and screaming at the security guard, according to court papers.
“Nixon began to tap on [the security guard’s] head and removed his radio, which had been clipped on his person. Nixon then struck [the security guard] repeatedly with his radio as he struggled unsuccessfully to regain control of it,” prosecutors wrote in a memo asking a judge to set bail in the case.
Zavala punched in the face a Delta gate employee who was trying to stop the mayhem and help the security guard, prosecutors said.
As the gate employee called for backup, the trio punched and kicked the security guard, who had fallen to the floor — and Torres stepped on the guard’s face, according to the feds.
The flight crew was able eventually to shield the security guard behind a glass pane to stop the assault and neither employee has returned to work at the airport since that day, according to prosecutors.
Attorneys for Torres and Zavala did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
Nixon’s attorney, Peter Guadagnino, said he and his client would assess the evidence in the case.
An attack captured on surveillance video shows a man strangling a woman with a shoelace at a Miami International Airport bus stop as she fights for her life and another man comes to the rescue.
Miami-Dade police say the man behind Sunday’s attack is Aaron Quiñones. The 27-year-old, charged with attempted murder, is in a Miami-Dade County jail on a $250,000 bond after being arrested later that day. Police didn’t release the name of the 26-year-old woman nor her condition.
The video, widely shared on popular Instagram page Only in Dade, shows a dramatic 46 seconds of violence and heroism in the midst of an attack on Sunday morning at a bus stop at 3814 NW 25th St. — near where airport riders pick up their rental cars. Miami-Dade County refused to release the video to the Miami Herald.
Watch til the End, Drunk Racist Man and woman mad because he’s Gold Or Diamond Hilton member and therefore gets service before everyone else. Hotel staff just sitting by and letting the racist woman do whatever, mind you she already touched him prior #Karen#hiltonpic.twitter.com/tApFW53z2a
The Daily Dot has a synopsis of what occurred in the video:
The footage shows HL standing by a reception desk separated from the white couple by four people who appear to be hotel security guards.
“Y’all haven’t de-escalated the situation because she’s still right there talking,” King can be heard saying, referring to the white woman. “Y’all are supposed to separate the party.”
After some unintelligible shouting and arguing, the white woman broke apart from the staff and attacked HL, wrapping her hands around his head and pulling him away from the reception desk. He can be seen trying to break free from her hold, then he punched the white man. The white man fell to the ground and seemed to be knocked out.
The security guards then attempted to restrain the white woman. Meanwhile, King can be heard repeatedly calling out that “everything is on camera.” In the video, HL described the couple as “drunk” and “rude.”
The security guards’ efforts to subdue the white woman didn’t seem to work, and she came back into the video frame, pulling herself out of the guards’ grips. She approached her partner, who was still laying on the floor. Then she yanked off her purse and stomped back over to HL, who was still standing by the reception desk.
The white woman tried to attack HL again, but security guards pulled her away. Another staffer led HL away. HL shook his head without saying anything as he walked away, but King questioned why the white woman was able to continue rampaging.
“Where is y’all’s security?” he yelled. “Get her under control. Oh my god! I don’t understand this. This is crazy. Where’s y’all’s security? Because this is unacceptable. This is unacceptable.”
The white woman broke away from the guards again and tried moving toward HL again.
“And y’all still haven’t restrained her,” King yelled.
The guards seemed to be trying to pull the woman down a hallway as the video ended. After the incident, HL stated he wasn’t allowed to stay at the hotel that night.
Two Dallas detectives searched a 25-year-old Chicago woman’s suitcase at Dallas Love Field Airport on Dec. 2 and seized more than $100,000 from the bag.
Detectives say they smelled a drug odor before they searched the woman’s luggage without her permission but did not arrest her and haven’t charged her with a crime. The woman was flying domestically and had a layover at the Dallas airport.
Civil asset forfeiture allows police to seize, then keep or sell the property they allege was involved in a crime, leaving someone whose property was seized to go to court to try to get it back.
A police K-9 alerted two detectives with the Dallas Police Department to a black, checked-in suitcase secured by a lock.
The dog, named Ballentine, is trained to pick up the scent of cocaine, heroin, marijuana and methamphetamine.
A police report does not name what city the suitcase was headed for, The Dallas Morning News reported.
However, the bag was set to be transferred to another plane. According to the report, detectives felt they had to act quickly with a search warrant because it “would not be obtained in time and could cause an undue burden to the passengers and or airlines,” the report says.
According to the report, detectives found shipping bags wrapped in blankets containing $100, $50, $20, $10, $5 and $1 bills inside the suitcase. There were no clothes or other items in the luggage.
When detectives found the woman in the airport terminal, she told them she was a dancer who worked in real estate and that she had sold a house.
Convinced the woman obtained the money through an illegal drug deal, detectives seized the cash. The woman signed a property receipt for the money, police say. Police did not arrest the woman or charge her with a crime.
The Dallas Police Department celebrated the seizure on social media. A post to the department’s Facebook page showed Ballentine posing beside the cash.
“We need to get him some treats! K-9 Officer Ballentine does it again! On 12/2/21, the Love Field Interdiction Squad seized over $100,000 with the help of Ballentine. Good job, Ballentine!” the caption read.
The FBI has confirmed it took possession of the money.
Under Texas law, authorities can seize assets without charging a person with a crime. Black Americans are disproportionately searched and targeted for seizure, a South Carolina study found.
Up to 80 percent of people whose assets are seized by authorities are never charged with a crime.
Institute for Justice attorney Dan Alban told CBS11 that, while it’s legal to travel with any amount of money domestically, agencies consider flying with large amounts of cash suspicious.
“Unfortunately, both TSA and DEA have policies that treat what they consider to be large amounts of money as presumptively suspicious and indicative of criminal activity,” Alban said.
Travelers leaving or flying into the U.S. must declare amounts of cash of at least $10,000.
Since 2000, $68 billion in civil assets have been seized by the government, according to the Institute for Justice.
A spokesperson for the police department told CBS11, “Detectives assigned to Love Field are thoroughly trained and experienced in various criminal interdiction techniques and tactics, many of which were utilized during this incident. Due to the nature of this seizure, as well as where it occurred, it will be subject to follow up investigation with our Federal partners.”
A woman arrested and charged in an alleged assault aboard a Delta Air Lines flight on Thursday hit a passenger in the face and spat on him after an argument over her remark about Rosa Parks, according to federal court records.
Patricia Yannet Cornwall is charged with assault while aboard an aircraft, according to the criminal complaint released Monday and filed in U.S. District Court’s Northern District of Georgia.