Photo Credit: Sourav Mishra
JetBlue Passenger Chokes And Kicks Flight Attendant In Violent Attack
A JetBlue passenger was arrested Wednesday following an incident that involved him violently attacking a flight attendant, according to NBC News. The passenger, identified as Khalil El Dhar, attempted to rush the flight deck around 5 PM, on Flight 261, which was traveling from Boston to San Juan, Puerto Rico.
Federal authorities said El Dhar choked and kicked the flight attendant during the wild assault.
According to an FBI affidavit, El Dhar had allegedly become angry due to not being able to make a phone call. He rushed toward the front of the plane, yelling in Spanish that he wanted to be shot. He was redirected to an area near the galley by a flight attendant just as a flight crew officer opened the door of the cockpit.
“El Dhar observed the door open and then grabbed the JetBlue [flight attendant] by their collar and tie with one hand while using his other hand to grab the overhead compartment to gain leverage to kick,” stated the FBI affidavit, according to NBC News. “As the JetBlue [flight attendant] was kicked in the chest, El Dhar yelled for the flight crew officer to shoot him.”
At one point, the flight attendant was unable to breathe due to how hard El Dhar was grabbing the tie. When the flight attendant was finally able to loosen the tie, El Dhar was grabbed and prevented from accessing to the flight deck.
El Dhar was then restrained by six or seven flight crew members using seatbelt extenders and a tie to secure his torso and ankles to a seat in the back of the aircraft until the flight landed. He was arrested and taken into police custody in San Juan, and is now facing felony charges. It is unclear if El Dhar has obtained an attorney.