(Photo by KENA BETANCUR/AFP via Getty Images)
OAN Geraldyn Berry
UPDATED 5:36 PM PT – Monday, March 6, 2023
A man suspected of assaulting a flight attendant and attempting to open the emergency exit door of a plane during a weekend flight to Boston has been charged federally.
33-year-old Francisco Severo Torres was traveling on a United Airlines flight out of Los Angeles when a flight attendant thought he had attempted to tamper with the emergency exit door.
The federal prosecutor’s office said that shortly before landing at Boston Logan International Airport, crew members were notified that the “starboard side door” had been disarmed. An unidentified attendant locked the handle before going to alert other crew members. According to federal officials, one of the employees noticed Torres had been near the door earlier and thought he might have tampered with it.
“A flight attendant then confronted Torres about tampering with the door, to which he allegedly responded by asking if there were cameras showing that he had done so,” the prosecutor’s office said.
Torres was thought to be a potential threat to the flight, so the captain was instructed to land as soon as possible. Afterwards, Torres walked up to the same door as two flight attendants who were stationed nearby.
“Torres then allegedly thrust towards one of the flight attendants in a stabbing motion with a broken metal spoon, hitting the flight attendant on the neck area three times,” the prosecutor’s office said.
A United Airlines representative affirmed that no injuries were reported.
Torres has been charged with one count of interference and attempted interference with flight crew members and attendants using a dangerous weapon.
Torres is scheduled to appear in federal court on Thursday.