Plane has to turn back around and land at MSP because of unruly couple

It's the latest "Disturbance on a plane caught on camera" story.
Author:
Publish date:
Image placeholder title

Did you ever have family road trips where you were being squirrelly in the back seat with your siblings, and your mom or dad had to do the "If you don't calm down and behave, we're going to have to turn this car around!" threat?

That's what happened Wednesday evening. But it was on a flight from Minneapolis to Los Angeles. And with a couple of adults.

What happened?

The Delta flight left Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport at 6:20 p.m., only to return about an hour and 15 minutes later after the flight crew reported a couple of unruly passengers, MSP spokesperson Patrick Hogan told GoMN.

Delta's statement said the flight crew "elected to return to Minneapolis shortly after takeoff when two passengers refused to follow crew instructions, became aggressive and created a disruption in the cabin."

Airport police then came on board and took the man and woman into custody, Hogan said, though based on online accounts even that was an ordeal.

This photographer on Twitter, Ryan Gooding, was on the plane and said about 20 minutes into the flight, the captain over the intercom said the couple in the back needed to stop giving the flight crew a hard time, or they'd turn around. Which they ended up doing.

Then the couple was being escorted by police from their seats in the very back of the plane ("so there's a looooong walk of shame" Gooding tweeted), during which a passenger said something that set one of them off. And from Gooding's vantage point, the man tried to punch the passenger.

And here's the video of about that moment. You can hear the jeering and celebratory applause as the couple is getting taken off. There's also a bit of swearing.

The man, a 35-year-old from Los Angeles, was booked and cited at the airport police station; the 36-year-old woman (who is from Edina) was uncooperative, Hogan said, so was taken to Hennepin County Jail. (Hennepin County jail records show she posted bail and has a court date on Jan. 13 for misdemeanor disorderly conduct and obstructing the legal process charges.)

The flight left again without an issue, Delta said, adding the safety of people on the plane is their "top priority."

The incident is still under investigation, so according to Hogan they can't release more details.

What to do if this happens

And of course stuff like this can inconvenience other passengers – especially if the plane has a quick turnaround time at its destination, it could cause long delays, Hogan said. Usually if a plane has to turn around, the airport can find a gate for them to return to that won't really impact operations at the rest of the airport, he added.

If you're on a plane with passengers who are being disruptive?

Fare Compare has a list of eight suggestions, including stay clear headed and polite when talking to them. But also know that you can absolutely press the call button to get a flight attendant to help too.

This New Zealand Stuff website also has a rundown.

Next Up

Related