Man ‘breaks flight attendant’s nose’ in ‘one of worst’ mid-air attacks ever

A plane was forced to make an emergency landing on Wednesday night after a male passenger brutally assaulted a female flight attendant, breaking her nose in '"one of the worst" mid-flight attacks ever.

American Airlines Flight 976, which was due to travel from New York to California, was diverted after a passenger reportedly walked to the back of the plane and punched the woman twice in the face.

The pilot was forced to make an unplanned stop in Denver where police "removed and apprehended the passenger," according to the airline.

Doug Parker, CEO of American Airlines, said in a statement that the man will be banned from flying with the airline and that the victim has his full support.

He started by calling the attack "one of the worst displays we've seen".

His statement continued: "Thankfully, our flight attendant is recovering and we are making sure she and her fellow crew members have the support they need.

"The passenger, however, will never be allowed to fly American again and we are doing everything we can to ensure they are prosecuted to the fullest extent possible."

He concluded by urging people to treat aviation staff with "respect, kindness and grace" as travel reopens post-Covid.

The FBI is now investigating the incident and has said that, although no arrests have been made thus far, its inquiries are ongoing.

America's Federal Aviation Administration (FFA) has also launched an investigation after it recently pioneered a new zero-tolerance policy for disruptive passengers.

It announced in August that $1 million (£725,000) worth of fines had been dished out in 2021.

One passenger has already been slapped with an eye-watering $45,000 (£32,600) fine this year.

They were accused of chucking their luggage at other passengers before lying in the aisle, grabbing a female flight attendant by her ankles and shoving their head up her skirt.

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