NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — A Delta flight operated by Republic Airways landed at LaGuardia Airport on Friday after a passenger tried to open a door to the plane while in flight.
According to passengers on the flight, a woman in her 20s appeared to behave in a “suicidal” manner and tried to open a door as the flight approached New York after its departure from Raleigh, North Carolina.
A law enforcement source told CBS2 the distraught passenger was a 20-year-old woman attending college in the South who was the victim of a crime and was being accompanied by her father to New York.
An aviation source said the woman tried to open the forward service door but the flight was never in danger as that door could not be opened in flight.
A live air traffic control transmission captured the moment the pilot declared an emergency.
“We would like to declare an emergency, the forward service door has been opened,” said the pilot. “We’ll need crash and fire rescue.”
Moments later the pilot updated their status.
“Cancel the crash fire rescue, we just had a disturbed passenger, mentally disturbed passenger, trying to open the forward door,” he said. “Everything’s under control now. We’re going to be taxing to the gate.”
Passenger Stacy Herbert posted about the incident as it happened on her Twitter account.
“Her father pulled her from door,” posted Herbert. “She was screaming her head off that she needed to open the door and die.”
“I wasn’t scared as I knew the door could not be opened but her shrieks were terrifying,” she added later. “And she was sitting behind us so when she was pulled back to her seat it was awful to see her suicidal distress.”
Once on the ground, the woman was taken off the plane. None of the passengers or flight crew were reported to have suffered any injuries.
After the incident, Port Authority police took statements from the passengers.
It was not clear if the woman ever reached the door before being restrained on the flight.
After the plane landed about 1:45 p.m., passengers were allowed into the terminal for statements. The plane, itself, remained in service and left LaGuardia bound for St. Louis at around 3:40 p.m.
Stay with CBS New York on this developing story.