Plane yob faces jail after kill threats
ADRUNKEN foul mouthed yob with a ‘face full of rage’ put passengers on a flight to Manchester at risk when he launched an aggressive tirade against cabin crew after a trip to Amsterdam.
Lance Wheelwright, 33, of Whiston, was told he faces jail after appearing in court following the incident, which a judge said put safety on board the plane at risk.
Manchester magistrates court heard that Wheelwright was travelling on a Flybe flight from Amsterdam to Manchester on November 10 last year.
As the plane was landing, security had to be alerted when Wheelwright, who was said to be heavily intoxicated, was abusive to cabin crew member Catherine Singer, after being told he couldn’t have eight cans of Stella. He called her a ‘fat bitch’ and then a ‘f****** bitch’ and staff said it was ‘kicking off’.
The court was told Ms Singer was upset and had to compose herself.
Wheelwright apologised, admitting he had ‘behaved like a d***’ but his behaviour continued.
Wheelwright’s behaviour, described as ‘loud’ and ‘lairy’ escalated when the plane came to land at Manchester Airport, prosecutor Kate Gaskell said.
A passenger, Callum Craig, asked him to calm down but Wheelwright replied: ‘ Mind your own business c***’. He then called Mr Craig a ‘fat Australian c***’, before adding: “I have got the world with me you c***”.
Mr Craig said he was scared and felt intimidated.
As he tried to leave the plane he aggressively pushed past cabin crew and shoved Ms Singer, saying: “Get out of my way you fat bitch’.
He then threatened to kill another member of the cabin crew, Lois Hughes. He said: “I’m going to kill her. “I will wait outside Manchester Airport for you you f****** bitch whore”.
Cabin crew described Wheelwright has being like a ‘man possessed’ and that he had a ‘face full of rage’.
In a victim impact statement Ms Singer, said: “In 16 years I have dealt with drunken and disruptive passengers.
“What I experienced on this occasion was the first time I have ever been spoken to in this manner or been physically assaulted.”
She added that there would have been ‘ devastating consequences’ if the plane was in the air at the time.
Another member of cabin crew said: “I feel I don’t want to come back to work tomorrow.”
The court heard that Wheelwright now accepts his behaviour was ‘absolutely horrendous’, and he is ‘utterly disgusted’ with himself.
He wants to apologise to the cabin crew and other passengers, the court heard.
District judge Sam Goozee adjourned the case for sentencing to Minshull Street Crown Court on February 2, but warned Wheelwright he faces prison.
Addressing Wheelwright, the judge said: “There is clear evidence your behaviour started during the landing process and caused the cabin crew to be distracted from their responsibilities for the safety of the aircraft.
“You should expect to receive an immediate custodial sentence.”
Wheelwright, of Whiston, Merseyside, pleaded guilty to one count of assault, one count of using threatening words or behaviour and one count of using racially aggravated threatening words or behaviour. ●
Lance Wheelwright outside Manchester Magistrates Court