Reclined Seat Leads To Mid-Air Choking Incident

Open Jaw

“That’s crazy. People are crazy.” That was one fellow passenger’s understandable response to an incident on a Southwest aircraft, where a woman reclined her seat and was subsequently choked by the male passenger seated behind her.


It was a short flight from LAX to SFO, but the pilot was forced to turn the plane around, in a situation that is becoming all too familiar.


“Evidently we've got 2 passengers who are in a physical altercation so we need to get turned around and get back to LAX," the pilot of the plane told Air Traffic Control before landing safely at LAX.


WN would not confirm that a choking incident was involved but said "flight #2010 from LAX to SFO returned to Los Angeles to allow police access to the cabin because of a rapidly escalating situation involving passengers who were not traveling together."


Witnesses said the woman claimed the man sitting behind her tried to choke her because she reclined her seat. FBI spokeswoman Laura Eimiller said that a passenger was detained for questioning after the plane returned to LAX, but despite the massive cost and inconvenience to other pax, no arrests were made.


The remaining 136 pax switched planes and were scheduled to arrive at SFO about 5 hours late, according to WN.

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