California girl punches flight attendant, sentenced to fifteen months in jail | Aviation News

A California girl was sentenced to fifteen months in federal jail for punching a Southwest Airlines flight attendant within the face throughout a flight, fracturing her tooth. A federal choose in San Diego ordered Vyvianna Quinonez to pay roughly $26,000 (round Rs 20 lakh) in restitution and a $7,500 (round Rs 5.92 lakh) advantageous for the assault on a Southwest journey between Sacramento and San Diego on May 23, 2021.

The 29-year-old Sacramento girl is prohibited from flying for 3 years whereas she is on supervised launch and should take part in anger administration courses or counseling. Quinonez final yr pleaded responsible to 1 depend of interference with flight crew members and attendants, admitting she punched the flight attendant within the face and head with a closed fist and grabbed her hair. Neither she nor her lawyer may very well be reached for remark Tuesday.

During the flight’s closing descent, the attendant had requested Quinonez to buckle her seat belt, stow her tray desk, and placed on her face masks correctly.

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Instead, Quinonez started recording the attendant on her cellphone, pushed her, then stood up and punched the girl within the face and grabbed her hair earlier than different passengers intervened, authorities mentioned.

The assault was recorded on one other passenger’s cellphone. The plea settlement mentioned that the flight attendant suffered three chipped tooth, two of which wanted crowns, together with bruises and a lower below her left eye that wanted stitches.

“Attacks on flight crew members, who perform vital jobs to ensure passenger safety, will not be tolerated,” US Attorney Randy Grossman mentioned in an announcement after the sentencing.

FBI Special Agent in Charge Stacey Moy mentioned, “the sentence should send a very strong message to air travellers; the FBI will vigorously pursue anyone who assaults or interferes with flight crews.”

The incident was a part of an escalation in unruly habits by airline passengers amid the coronavirus pandemic and led the president of the flight attendants’ union to ask for extra federal air marshals on planes.

Airlines in 2021 reported greater than 5,000 incidents of unruly passengers to the Federal Aviation Administration. Most passengers refused to observe the federal requirement for passengers to put on face masks whereas on planes, however almost 300 concerned intoxicated passengers, the FAA mentioned.

With inputs from AP

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