JEFFERSON PARISH, La. (WGNO) — A New Orleans man is in custody and accused of battery after an encounter with a flight attendant at the Louis Armstrong International Airport.
According to the Jefferson Parish Sheriff’s Office, the plane was on the ground around 4 p.m. Wednesday when 39-year-old Nelson Montgomery injured himself with a sharp object.
Deputies said Mongomery then grabbed a flight attendant, who suffered two cuts, possibly caused by the same sharp object. She was treated on the scene.
Officials report Montgomery was overpowered by several passengers and held down until police arrived.
Montgomery was treated at a local hospital for his non-life-threatening injuries. He was booked into the Jefferson Parish Sheriff’s on charges of aggravated battery, disturbing the peace, and simple battery.
Authorities have not released any details regarding a possible motive.
There have been over 1,000 cases of unruly passengers on U.S. flights already this year, according to the FAA. Airlines have been dealing with record numbers of unruly flyers since the start of the COVID pandemic.
Over the last three years, airlines have reported record-setting incidents of disruptive passengers. That includes passengers accused of assaulting flight crews, opening emergency doors, and refusing to wear masks.
More recently, a Las Vegas-bound flight was forced to divert to Denver after an apparent fight broke out between some passengers. Two women were escorted off the plane, according to a passenger that captured video of the incident.
Causing a disturbance on a plane is a federal crime, and unruly passengers can face criminal prosecution or even fines.
Addy Bink contributed to this report.