Unruly Passengers Create Tense Moments Aboard AA Flight From LAX To JFK

3 Travelers Lock Themselves In Lavatory; Fighter Jets Shadow Plane To NYC

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — It’s just not a day to be messing around.

WCBS 880’s Marla Diamond With A Passenger

That’s what three passengers on board an American Airlines flight from Los Angeles to John F. Kennedy Airport found out on Sunday afternoon.

Sources told CBS News, the three passengers on Flight 34 were disruptive, moving in and out of lavatories, even at one point locking themselves inside. Considering the heightened state of security and general uneasiness air travelers are feeling due to the 10th anniversary of the 9/11 terror attacks on New York City and Washington D.C., security officials are leaving nothing to chance.

Special Report: Remembering 9/11 — 10 Years Later

The unruly passengers eventually returned to their seats. They were later questioned by federal authorities and cleared, 1010 WINS’ Sonia Rincon reported. At least one federal air marshal was on board and at no point was the cockpit in danger.

There was “no nexus to terrorism,” FBI spokesman J. Peter Donald said.

LISTEN: 1010 WINS’ Sonia Rincon reports

“In our eyes, it’s a big nothing,” American Airlines spokesman Tim Smith said.

Photos: NYC 9/11 Ceremony |The 9/11 Memorial | 9/11 Around The World | Flight 93 Memorial

The North American Aerospace Defense Command scrambled two F-16 jets to shadow Flight 34 until it landed safely at Kennedy Airport at 4:10 p.m. Sunday, the Transportation Security Administration said in a statement. The jets acquired the plane about 100 miles west of New York City and followed until it landed.

The FBI’s Donald said in a statement that the jets were sent to escort the flight “out of an abundance of caution.”

Smith said a “security concern” was brought to the airline’s attention but the plane’s captain never declared any sort of security threat and never requested law enforcement help.

He said the crew used “normal procedures” to assess the circumstances and the plane landed as planned.

Please offer your thoughts in the comments section below.

(TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

  • gonzotx


    • PeopleSuck

      THIS IS ALL BS! we sat around all three of them…nothing happened to cause this much concern. No locked gang bang in the bathroom people.

      gonzotx…take a chill pill bro. This ain’t the south in 1960’s.

      Nice $1,000,000.00 bill added to the deficit for some kooky passenger’s paranoia.

  • Wildweasel

    Those 3 AH’s should have been arrested and banned from ever flying inside the US borders again.

    • BOB USMC

      You should be banned from the internet.

    • Leah

      Because banning people from flying for going to the bathroom is definitely an American way of doing things. Liberty and justice for all, right?

      You people have lost your minds.

  • scallywag

    I suppose this is to make us all feel safer, part of the initiative of vigilance we saw with Hurricane Irene. I see a big waste of money, but maybe that’s just me, always the optimist. If police and TSA officials sees fit to scramble over a few rambunctious drunks, that’s their prerogative. Maybe they can start responding to those sots who keep puking on my stoop, as well.


    • Joel


  • cbinflux

    Probably Methodists or Mennonites, huh?

  • Hank

    Their fellow passengers should have kicked the living stuffing out of them

    • Chowderhead

      heartily agree

  • pat

    What religion were they?

    • Hank


      • http://patrioticamerican.wordpress.com patrioticamerican

        LMAO. “Towelish… Man, that’s funny!

      • Dee

        HAHA Hank, love it ! !

  • injun93

    you are probably right.

  • injun93

    flying sucks!

    • wildbill6996

      You forgot to finish your comment,, its should be “”””””FLYING SUCKS, when you’re a frigging IDIOT “”””””…..

  • Larry

    What a waste of resources. The captain himself decides there’s no unusual problem–yet someone orders up a fighter escort.

    No arrests…no threat…no problem

    And the press eats it up…. “security officials are leaving nothing to chance” and “tense moments” !!!!

  • Sorely Frickey

    Six months of sol before starting their regular 20-year sentence? Not a bad idea.

  • Bill

    You go to the airport, get molested by TSA,, get diarrhea after the molestation from the trauma, have to use the restroom,, and the government is willing to kill you and your fellow travelers for the trouble it caused.
    Sounds perfectly normal to me.
    I think the “terrorists” are winning.

  • Dave

    If they were white it would have already been reported that Tea Party extremists held hostages and tried to down the plane, the whole whole yelling racial profanities. It was obviously a minority since no race was reported…just like those pesky old flash mob beatings and robberies.

    • MikeD

      They were white, that is why their race was NOT reported.

  • typicalwhiteguy

    Were they “ghey” Muslims?

  • http://thecryptojournalist.wordpress.com The Cryptojournalist

    Sounds like a cipher or threesome gone awry


  • Greg

    It’s because of the “politically correct” media that the nationality of the idiots was not disclosed. I’m pretty sure, Mr. good muslim, that if they were “white guys”, the media would LOVE to report that part of the equation. It’s their silence in the matter that makes me believe they were not of caucasion origin.

  • raul

    give them the gas bill for the f-16s

  • David

    Sounds like hippster or code pink idiots who thught it would be funny to show civil disobedience. In response to their humor they should have been locked up and tazed on the way over to make a point.

    • Ernaldo T

      They should have dropped them out the back door………….

  • Dr. Botkin

    “A big nothing?” I wonder how much it cost to have three fighters shadow “the big nothing” The group maynot been terrors, but they should be thrown in jail for their disruptive behavior . And that AH at AA can go to hell.

  • Nobama

    I feel moose slime has been covered up by AA

  • cthulhu

    They didn’t even get tased?

  • Sotiredofitall

    Can we bill them for the cost of the F16s? That is if they don;t go to jail.

    • Bill

      Isn’t that what you pay taxes for?
      Why should they get the bill? Because they weren’t good little sheeple?

      • Zipperhead

        Go to H E L L Bill.

  • Joe Boxer

    Wouldn’t want to jump to conclusions now, would we? Wanna’ bet they were Middle Easterners? Wanna’ bet? Huh? Huh?

    • MikeD

      They were white

  • Gene McVay

    My guess is that they were Boy Scouts, Nuns, Navy Seals or Preachers. If they were Islamic nothing would have been said.

    • Leslie

      Couldn’t agree more.

    • Billy Jr

      Gene, you have it nailed, my friend!

  • bh

    Hello, Folks it is “Always” American Airlines that has these types of over reaction events. Who knows why, just avoid them and fly another airlines. The few percent of paranoid citizens and paranoid out of control government is really very small compared to the rest of the citizenry. They will self destruct on their own, do not join them.

  • Robert

    so ummm where were all these scrambled jets on 9/11?

    • Francesca

      There was at least one jet scrambled to follow Flight 93. The pilot was ready to deal with it if necessary.

      • Ernaldo T

        Actually two were scrambled, and were unarmed. They were both ready to ram flight 93 when the passengers revolted and crashed the plane…..

      • MarcP

        Ernaldo T, References please.

  • sgtcarter

    yeah, and send part of the bill to “guest

  • Dantana

    Who were these people! Where were they from?

    • freecheese

      Good question. That was my firstr thought. I would put my money that are part of the “MTV” Generation who think they are REALLY cool !

  • jose

    they wont get any bill or banned from flying they will probably let them go to hijack the next plane

    • Feste Ainoriab

      The security apparatchik of the United States is prone to extreme overreaction and exaggeration. Two people went into a bathroom to make out, and it becomes a federal case egged on by idiot townsfolk carrying figurative pitchforks and torches crying out to burn the witches.

      Our liberties are evaporating before our very eyes, and there is no shortage of fools who throw their support behind tyranny.

    • Russ

      I think if two people go into an airplane washroom to ‘make out’ they have a serious problem. For one thing, thoughtlessness for others who might have more important things to do in the restroom than tongue their gay lover.

  • gino papageorgeio

    Something is missing in this report of events. The airline says the pilot never asked for law enforcement assistance and the events on the plane were handled with “normal procedures”, so how did the Air Force get the word???

    • Bob

      If you are asking an intelligent question — and I believe you are — you don’t belong in this forum, which is comprised of idiots for the most part.

  • cheongyei

    So Tim Smith, the AA spokeshole says it was a big nothing?

    Then why did they call for Air Force escorts.

    American Airlines needs a new spokesman.

  • Denver

    What was the race or ethnic identity of the passengers? You can bet if they were Amish, you’d know it.

  • Guest

    Wouldn’t the air marshal or pilot have called this in if either thought there was truly a problem? So, who called it in? What did the passengers do that was so unruly? I lock the door whenever I use the lavatory (that’s now a suspicious act?) and on my last flight there were five or more people moving about the cabin, at times, and using the lavatories. No fighter jets were scrambled. Even the airlines said what happened on the LA-NY flight was “a big nothing”. So, why is this even newsworthy? Nonsense stories — and slipshod reporting — like this serve no purpose — though they do feed paranoia.

  • deefefe

    for going to the bathroom? yikes, i guess al qaeda has won

    • BJ

      They didn’t just go to the bathroom and lock the door … there were at least 2 people in the bathroom at the same time (hence the “making out”. There is NEVER an excuse for that, even when it isn’t 9/11.

      If a rotation of 3 people kept going to the bathroom in groups of 2 then yeah – I would be a little suspicious as well.

    • Brassia

      I wonder how 2 people fit in the airplave lavartory- it is barelyenough room for one …lol

  • JRHowosso

    I hope they send these Yahoos the bill

  • archiesgirl

    One way to dissuade someone from pulling a bunch of nonsense would be to make these three boobs pay for the cost of scrambling those jets and publicize the punishment and the cost.

  • HAL300

    Pay no attention to those Jihadist Droids. They aren’t who you are looking for. Move along….

  • Gene McVay

    That sounds serious, I never heard of anybody locking the door on a lavatory before. Hysterical Flight Crews and the fact that Citizens must give up all Constitutional Rights is a good reason to find other transportation. Charter a small airplane, drive, charter a limo.

    • Debrief

      American Airlines lost 2 airplanes on 9/11,remember?? idiot.

    • Chickenhead

      Maybe he was locking the in can so he could rub one out in there. never know.

  • Steven Moshlak

    Sounds more like a drill or simulation, than anything else.

    Nothing to see. Let’s move along.

  • Neil Mooney

    So if the Captain didn’t feel there was a threat and neither did the crew or Air Marshall, who called NORAD?

    • JIm

      Your mom.

  • Susuu

    Buttbiaquit, I suspect it’s because the full story might identify the idiots in question as members of a group, whose identity must never be mentioned, when trouble occurs on an airplane.

  • db

    “In our eyes, it’s a big nothing,” American Airlines spokesman Tim Smith said.

    Maybe Tim needs to be a passenger once in awhile.

    What a maroon.

    • Noah Count

      3 ijit maroons. They are probably a dark red.

  • Lee Boice

    I like the banned from flying idea..YEA PERFECT friggin morons

    • Feste Ainoriba

      OVERREACTION. We’ve all gone mad.

  • absolute truth

    The only way the racial or ethnic characteristics would ever be released is if they were chubby middle age white men.

    • brassia

      Or maybe scary retired grandmothers waving (the odacity!!) an American flad at the Tea Party rally!

  • Lee Boice

    any way we can have the names of these idiots? LOVE to know the details.

    • robin

      Mohammed, Mohammed and Mohammed.

  • socalxplorer

    I know, how about they get the bill for the fighter jets instead us tax payers?

  • urstrange

    Of what ehtnic variety were these unruly passengers?

    • urstrange

      OOPS…mistyped ethnic…

  • http://theitinerantman.wordpress.com Josh Lokken

    Send them the bill for putting the fighter jets in the sky. Idiots.

  • George Carlson

    They couldn’t be Muslims, could they? Would they teel us?

  • iggy

    it’s not that big. yet they had fighter jets escort them in. wonder what big would have done.

  • buttbiaquit

    Dumb and dumber comes to mind. What type of an idiot plays around on planes anymore on 9/11 or any day for that matter.

    WHY are people just so stupid ?

    AND why aren’t we getting the full story

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