Plane returns to Los Angeles after fight between passengers

LOS ANGELES — A Southwest Airlines jetliner on its way to San Francisco returned to Los Angeles International Airport shortly after takeoff because of a fight between two passengers, officials said.

FBI agents met the plane at the gate late Sunday and one person was removed from the Boeing 737, Southwest spokeswoman Melissa Ford told The Associated Press.

The pilot of Flight 2010 decided to return to LAX because of a “rapidly escalating” situation that culminated in a “physical altercation by one person against another,” Ford said Monday. She did not elaborate but said the two passengers involved were not traveling together.

Comedian Mark Curry, the star of the 1990s sitcom “Hangin’ with Mr. Cooper” who now hosts a morning radio show in San Francisco, said he was asleep on the plane and the commotion woke him up.

“I thought it was a terrorist so I jumped up,” Curry told KNTV-TV, the NBC affiliate in the Bay Area. “The woman was saying he grabbed her neck, saying ‘he choked me! He choked me! He hit me in the head!'”

Curry said, “The lady was frantic. They wanted me to put restraints on the guy. They asked me if I would help. I said, ‘At 30,000 feet, yes! I’ll beat anybody down.’ It was an incredible situation.”

The passenger who was removed from the flight was detained for questioning. No arrest was immediately made but the investigation was still underway, FBI spokeswoman Laura Eimiller said.

The flight left LAX around 9:50 p.m. and returned to the airport about an hour later, Ford said. The captain declared an emergency to receive priority for landing, she said.

The remaining 136 passengers switched planes and departed again for San Francisco International Airport around 12:20 a.m. Monday, Ford said.

Just Posted

San Francisco health experts recommend that pregnant women should receive the COVID-19 vaccine, as well as a booster shot. (Unai Huizi/Shutterstock)
What pregnant women need to know about COVID and booster shots

Questions regarding COVID-19 booster shots for pregnant people have been pouring in… Continue reading

Examiner reporter Ben Schneider drives an Arcimoto Fun Utility Vehicle along Beach Street in Fisherman’s Wharf on Tuesday, Oct. 19, 2021. (Kevin N. Hume/The Examiner)
Could San Francisco’s tiny tourist cruisers become the cars of the future?

‘Fun Utility Vehicles’ have arrived in The City

Badly needed rain cooled off pedestrians on Market Street in The City on Wednesday. (Kevin N. Hume/The Examiner)
Storm door opens in San Francisco — what will the rains bring?

‘Come Monday, fire season in Northern California should be done’

The so-called “twindemic” that public health officials in California and elsewhere warned about last year — the combined threat of influenza and COVID-19 — was largely eased by the wide use of face masks, physical distancing and reduced travel, experts say. But their concerns are back this year. (Shutterstock)
COVID and the flu: Is a ‘twindemic’ threat lurking again?

‘Because of so little disease last year, population immunity is likely lower’

49ers' quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo hopes to return to the field this weekend to lead San Francisco against the Colts. (Photo courtesy of 49ers)
NFL Week 7 picks: Niners face crucial matchup against the Colts

San Francisco could join Seattle on the brink of irrelevancy in the NFC West with another loss

Most Read