Video of pas­sen­ger dragged off flight sparks vi­ral up­roar

The Washington Times Daily - - NATION -

CHICAGO | Video of po­lice of­fi­cers drag­ging a pas­sen­ger from an over­booked United Air­lines flight sparked an up­roar Mon­day on so­cial me­dia, and a spokesman for the air­line in­sisted that em­ploy­ees had no choice but to con­tact author­i­ties to re­move the man.

As the flight waited to de­part from Chicago’s O’Hare Air­port, of­fi­cers could be seen grab­bing the scream­ing man from a win­dow seat, pulling him across the arm­rest and drag­ging him down the aisle by his arms. The air­line was try­ing to make room for four of its em­ploy­ees on the Sun­day evening flight to Louisville, Ken­tucky.

Pas­sen­ger Au­dra D. Bridges posted the video on Face­book. Her hus­band, Tyler Bridges, said United of­fered $400 and then $800 vouch­ers and a ho­tel stay for vol­un­teers to give up their seats. When no one vol­un­teered, a United man­ager came on the plane and an­nounced that pas­sen­gers would be cho­sen at ran­dom.

When air­line em­ploy­ees named four cus­tomers who had to leave the plane, three did so. The fourth re­fused, and po­lice were called.

Os­car Munoz, CEO of United Air­lines’ par­ent com­pany, de­scribed the event as “up­set­ting” and apol­o­gized for “hav­ing to re-ac­com­mo­date th­ese cus­tomers.”

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