Man tries to storm the cockpit on JetBlue flight from Boston to San Juan and kicks and chokes flight crew before demanding the police shoot him
- Khalil El Dahr was arrested Wednesday after allegedly choking a flight attendant and attempting to enter the plane’s cockpit
- During the struggle, El Dahr began shouting at air marshals in Spanish and Arabic, daring them to shoot him
- It took six or seven crew members to subdue the rampaging rider, who was able to break free from his initial restraints, and had to be tied down with seat belts
- The flight landed in San Juan safely, and El Dahr now faces felony charges of interfering with a flight crew
A passenger on a JetBlue flight from Boston to San Juan, Puerto Rico, was arrested Wednesday after he allegedly choked a flight attendant and tried to storm the plane’s cockpit.
According to an FBI affidavit, Khalil El Dahr attempted to force himself into the flight deck of JetBlue flight 261 on Wednesday evening, after a phone call he was attempting to make failed to go through due to lack of service on the airborne aircraft.
El Dahr ‘became angry about the call’s unsuccess,’ a flight attendant told the FBI of the incident.
A four-page FBI affidavit detailed the assault, in which Khalil El Dahr attempted to force himself into the cockpit of JetBlue flight 261, choking and kicking crew members
El Dahr then began to cause a scene, and a flight attendant was able to ‘corral’ the unruly passenger, back into his seat – until the plane’s pilot decided to open the cockpit door to address the commotion.
El Dahr then proceeded to kick and choke members of the flight crew, attempting to get to the pilot’s quarters.
‘El Dahr observed the door open and then grabbed the Jet Blue FA by their collar and tie with one hand while using his other hand to grab the overhead compartment to gain leverage to kick.’
The incident took place on a JetBlue flight from Boston to San Juan, Puerto Rico, Wednesday
During the ensuing struggle, El Dahr began shouting in Spanish and Arabic, daring sky marshals to shoot him while the staffers scrambled to detain the rampaging rider.
‘While he was yelling,’ the affidavit stated, ‘he was still holding the JetBlue flight attendant by their tie.’
‘This resulted in the tie tightening and ultimately prevented the JetBlue flight attendant from breathing.’
Eventually six or seven crew members were able to subdue the man, restraining him with flex cuffs.
However, a raging El Dahr was able to snap the first pair of cuffs, causing the crew to resort to using multiple seat-belt extenders to form a makeshift straitjacket, while using another pair of cuffs and a flight attendant’s neck tie to tie him to a seat.
Just over an hour later, the plane managed to land safely in San Juan – where El Dahr was swiftly taken into custody.
He now faces felony charges of interfering with a flight crew.