Belligerent Passenger Owes United $20K

And he's been banned from the airline after disrupting flight
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 30, 2024 2:00 AM CDT
Man and His Girlfriend Banned From United After Disrupting Flight
A United Airlines Boeing 787 approaches for landing in Lisbon, Sept. 2, 2023, with the setting moon in the background.   (AP Photo/Armando Franca, File)

An English man owes United Airlines $20,638 after he was so disruptive on a flight last month that the plane was diverted. The flight took off from London, heading for Newark, on the morning of March 1, and soon after, Alexander Michael Dominic MacDonald, 30, and his girlfriend, both of whom appeared to be intoxicated, began "arguing loudly," according to an affidavit cited by USA Today. Flight attendants asked MacDonald to lower his voice, which he at first did, but it wasn't long before more "loud yelling" was heard, per the affidavit. Things got even uglier after crew members tried (and failed) to calm MacDonald down.

It was at that point he got "verbally and physically aggressive," the affidavit states, eventually threatening to "mess up the plane." He became "combative" and pushed the lead flight attendant, by the shoulders, into a corner. He was eventually restrained in flex cuffs, with the help of two passengers, but the aggression continued and the pilot decided to divert to Maine for everyone's safety, Business Insider reports. MacDonald was arrested there, and the flight continued on to Newark. He and his girlfriend are now banned from future United flights, and MacDonald pleaded guilty to the charges against him on March 22. He was last week ordered to pay restitution to the airline, and will be deported back to England. (More United Airlines stories.)

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