Passenger Exposed Buttocks and Threw a Can During Flight, Prosecutors Say

A passenger who refused to put on a masks on a flight from Dublin to New York pulled down his pants and uncovered his buttocks, threw a can at a passenger and put his cap on the captain’s head and advised him, “Don’t touch me,” prosecutors mentioned in a case unsealed on Friday.

After the Delta flight from Dublin to John F. Kennedy International Airport on Jan. 7, the passenger, Shane McInerney, 29, of Galway, Ireland, was charged with deliberately assaulting and intimidating a crew member, prosecutors mentioned. If convicted, he faces as much as 20 years in jail, prosecutors mentioned.

On Saturday, Mr. McInerney’s lawyer, Benjamin Yaster, declined to touch upon the costs. Mr. McInerney made an preliminary look in federal courtroom in Brooklyn on Jan. 14 and was launched on a $20,000 bond, prosecutors mentioned.

The expenses characterize the most recent instance of the unruly and typically violent conduct that has surged on airplanes for the reason that begin of the pandemic. Many of the disturbances have concerned passengers who refused to put on masks, as required by the federal authorities.

On Wednesday, an American Airlines flight from Miami to London turned around about an hour into its journey due to a passenger who refused to put on a masks, the airline mentioned.

In October, a passenger was accused of punching an American Airlines flight attendant in her nose, giving her a concussion, after a masks dispute. And in December, a California girl pleaded guilty to repeatedly punching a flight attendant on a Southwest Airlines flight, bloodying her face and chipping three tooth.

“Over the past year, we had seen a dramatic uptick in unruly passenger incidents, and we’ve undertaken a number of measures to get that under control,” Steve Dickson, the administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration, mentioned throughout an online discussion this week.

“And I’m happy to say that the rates are down significantly, year over year, but we’ve still got more work to do,” Mr. Dickson mentioned. “And this is, again, something that we need to continue to stay focused on.”

In a assertion filed in courtroom, an F.B.I. agent mentioned that Mr. McInerney had refused to put on a masks regardless of being requested to take action “dozens” of instances in the course of the eight-hour flight. He threw an empty beverage can, hitting one other passenger within the head, and kicked the seat again in entrance of him, disturbing the passenger there, the assertion mentioned.

At one level, he walked from his seat within the financial system part to the first-class part and complained to a flight attendant in regards to the meals. While being escorted again to his seat, Mr. McInerney “pulled down his pants and underwear and exposed his buttocks” to the flight attendant and passengers sitting close by, the assertion mentioned.

About two hours into the flight, the captain, whereas on a break, spoke to Mr. McInerney, the assertion mentioned. During the dialog, Mr. McInerney twice took off his cap, put it on the captain’s head and then eliminated it once more, the assertion mentioned.

He additionally put a fist near the captain’s face and mentioned, “Don’t touch me,” the assertion mentioned.

At least one of many passengers discovered Mr. McInerney’s conduct to be “scary,” and members of the flight crew thought-about diverting the aircraft to a different airport in order that Mr. McInerney may very well be faraway from the aircraft, the assertion mentioned.

The flight continued to New York. As the aircraft was making its closing method to J.F.Okay. and everybody was buckled of their seats, Mr. McInerney once more disobeyed the orders of flight attendants, in response to the assertion, which mentioned he stood up, walked into the aisle and “refused to sit back down.”

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