A flight crew aboard a Frontiers Airlines flight duct taped an unruly passenger to his seat after he allegedly groped and assaulted multiple flight attendants.
Frontier Airlines initially said that they suspended the crew. However, they changed their mind after public backlash over the viral video of the incident.
A report from the Miami-Dade Police Department said that Maxwell Berry of Norwalk, Ohio, was flying from Philadelphia to Miami on the Frontier flight on July 31 when he began to cause a disruption.
According to the report, he was already intoxicated and ordered more drinks on the flight. Berry then allegedly brushed an empty cup against a flight attendant’s backside.
Police said that he spilled a drink on himself before groping the breasts of a female flight attendant. He also punched a male flight attendant in the face when he tried to calm him down.
He also allegedly fought with passengers as he was being duct taped to the seat. A video shows Berry screaming obscenities and informing people that he has wealthy parents.
Berry was arrested when the flight landed and police had to use a Taser to restrain him. The 23-year-old was charged with three counts of battery and booked into jail.
Frontier said in a statement that the flight crew was “relieved of flying pending completion of investigation of the events.”
Many on social media defended the actions of the flight crew and demanded Frontier be more lenient.
“How many mechanisms does a flight crew have to restrain a violent passenger? It may *look* crazy, but this seems to be one reasonable method,” tweeted Seth Abramson.
“Yo @FlyFrontier, you have suspended a crew of superheroes for taking care of a douchebag that sexually harassed one of your flight attendants. This crew deserves a company paid vacation for their work, not a suspension,” responded Josh Jordan.
“Frontier should reward the damn crew. This guy was a tool,” replied Dan Gainor of Newsbusters.