Members of the New England Revolution of Major League Soccer were among those who grabbed the passenger near an exit door, FBI spokesman Gary Johnson said. Tie wraps were placed on the man, whose name was not immediately released. He was taken into custody in Oklahoma City and placed under psychiatric evaluation, Johnson said.
American Flight 725, a Boeing 757, arrived in Oklahoma City at 1:35 p.m. CDT and was back in the air an hour later, said American Airlines spokesman Tim Smith. It landed without further incident at Los Angeles International Airport at 3:13 p.m. PDT.
Craig Tornberg, the soccer team's general manager, said he confronted the man as soon as he saw him emerge naked from one of the plane's restrooms.
"I said he should get back into the bathroom and put on his clothes," Tornberg said after the plane landed in Los Angeles. "He said something strange to me. He said, 'I don't hear you. I don't see you.'"
Tornberg said the man complied and got dressed but a few minutes later "made a beeline for the emergency door."
Tornberg said he, assistant coach Gwynne Williams and Michael Burns, the team's vice president for player personnel, grabbed the man and forced him into a seat while a flight attendant tied him up. "It was strange, but when he put his hands on the exit door—that brought it to another level," Burns said. "Clearly, he wasn't thinking straight."
The pilot diverted the flight to Will Rogers World Airport where the man was removed.
Wednesday, July 23, 2008
Ah, nothing like being drunk (we're assuming), naked, and bit crazy in a small confined space, like an airplane! Every wonder how you would react if a man walked out of one of those tiny bathrooms with nothing on but a smile and then he tried to open the emergency exit door? Some passengers on an American Airlines flight from Boston to Los Angeles got to find out! Here's more from San Jose Mercury News: