Southwest Airlines bans passenger who 'seriously assaulted' flight attendant

Southwest Airlines has banned a passenger after she allegedly "assaulted" a flight attendant on an aircraft going from Sacramento, California to San Diego.

Southwest Airlines bans passenger who 'seriously assaulted' flight attendant
Southwest Airlines

Southwest Airlines has banned a passenger after she allegedly "assaulted" a flight attendant on an aircraft going from Sacramento, California to San Diego.The passenger, identified by the Port of San Diego Harbor Police Department as Vyvianna Quinonez, was arrested in San Diego after she allegedly "struck the flight attendant, causing serious injuries," officials said in a press release.Quinonez and an unnamed flight attendant allegedly got into an altercation after the passenger was reprimanded for not wearing her face mask.

A graphic video of the altercation went viral, appearing to show the passenger punch the flight attendant, leaving her with a bloody nose."She has been notified she is no longer welcome to fly on us," Southwest spokesperson Chris Mainz told PEOPLE in a statement, confirming her ban.

"The passenger repeatedly ignored standard inflight instructions and became verbally and physically abusive upon landing," Mainz also told USA Today. "Law enforcement officials were requested to meet the flight upon arrival, and the passenger was taken into custody.  We do not condone or tolerate verbal or physical abuse of our flight crews, who are responsible for the safety of our passengers."

Quinonez, 28, was charged with battery causing serious bodily injury, a felony.It is unclear if the passenger obtained legal representation.Southwest's flight attendants union, Transport Workers Union Local 556, wrote a letter to the company's CEO informing them about the incident.

"This past weekend, one of our flight attendants was seriously assaulted, resulting in injuries to the face and a loss of two teeth,'' Lyn Montgomery, president of TWU Local 556 said in the letter obtained by USA Today. "Unfortunately, this is just one of many occurrences. I write to you today because we cannot tolerate our beloved cohearts (Southwest's word for co-workers) being abused in such a manner, and because I am asking for your help and leadership in ending these travesties.''

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