An American Airlines crew and off-duty Honolulu police officer subdued a man Friday on board a Honolulu-bound flight after he tried to break into the cockpit, ABC and local news report. The flight, which took off from Los Angeles, landed safely about 11:35 a.m. with a military escort. Bloomberg adds that a laptop computer was placed near the cockpit door.
A source at the TSA told ABC News that the man was waiting for the bathroom near the cockpit when a flight attendant asked him to sit down. He had a laptop with him and appeared to try the cockpit door before he was subdued, the source said. Additional sources said the man, who is reportedly from Turkey, breached security at Los Angeles International Airport, but was assessed and allowed to board AA Flight 31 anyway. The flight departed from Los Angeles International Airport at 8:34 a.m. local time.
Once the Airbus A321 was in the air, the man allegedly tried to break through the cockpit door.
Image: Hawaii News Now.
American Airlines said in a statement that law enforcement met the plane upon landing in Honolulu following a “disturbance” on the flight: “Due to a disturbance during the flight, the crew requested that law enforcement meet the aircraft upon landing in Honolulu,” American Airlines said, in a statement. “American is in touch with federal law enforcement.”
The plane was escorted by two F-22 fighter jets for the duration of the flight following the disturbance, U.S. Pacific Command said in a statement.
LATEST: 2 F-22 fighter jets escorted American Airlines Flight 31 to Honolulu Int’l Airport due to disturbance on board, Pacific Command says http://pic.twitter.com/Ee8zTg4PN3
— ABC News (@ABC) http://ift.tt/2qArHUxtps://twitter.com/ABC/status/865693959464636417″>May 19, 2017
The man has been detained, the Department of Homeland Security said in a statement. The DHS is continuing to monitor all flights “out of an abundance of caution,” it said.
DHS Statement: http://pic.twitter.com/lrZAYL4D6h
— Homeland Security (@DHSgov) May 19, 2017
“Crazy! Someone tried to break into the cockpit on my flight from LA to Honolulu,” the Instagram user wrote. “We were greeted by the FBI. They are now taking us off the plane a few rows at a time for dog sniffing and interviews.”
ABC adds that law enforcement is responding to analyze a suspicious item – reportedly a notebook computer – associated with the man.
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