An American Airlines flight headed from Miami to Paris had to be diverted into Boston airport late on Wednesday night after two passengers began arguing and the argument turned physical. The disagreement was sparked by the hot button issue of the week: seat reclining.
This is the second such incident in the last week. A Newark-to-Denver flight ended up in Chicago on Sunday after a man attached a "Knee Defender" gadget to the seat in front of him to prevent it from reclining, and got a cup of water in the face from the woman sitting there as a response. An online debate about the ethics of leaning back has been raging ever since.
Edmond Alexandre, a 61-year-old Parisian man, got into a dispute with the unnamed passenger in front of him who attempted to recline his seat. Alexandre became increasingly upset, grabbing the arm of a flight attendant who was attempting to smooth over the situation. It was at that moment that air marshals, who were on the flight undercover, had to intervene. The marshals were able to successfully restrain Alexandre until the flight landed in Boston.
After being removed from the plane, Alexandre was transported to a Boston hospital to be treated for a pre-existing medical condition. Authorities told ABC News that he was arraigned at the hospital for "a local charge of interfering with a flight crew" and will face another federal charge of this same sort. The flight continued to Paris without him.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.