Brian Plummer was sitting towards the again of a Delta Air Traces flight readying to depart La Guardia Airport on Monday when, he mentioned, he seen a person and a girl with a big service canine close by.
The Atlanta-bound airplane was not fully full, Mr. Plummer mentioned, and the couple modified seats a number of instances.
The person and girl by no means did settle in, and as Flight 462 started to taxi out to a runway, the person stood up, ignoring a flight attendant’s order to sit down, saying that he had post-traumatic stress dysfunction, Mr. Plummer mentioned.
A short while later, Mr. Plummer mentioned, he felt the airplane shudder to a cease. It was not instantly clear to him why, however the flight crew ultimately advised the passengers what had occurred.
The person had pressured open a cabin door, activating an emergency slide, after which he, his feminine companion and their canine slid their means out of the airplane, officers mentioned.
On Tuesday, Lenis Valens, a spokeswoman for the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, recognized the passengers as Antonio Murdock, 31, and Brianna Greco, 23, each from Florida.
Ms. Valens mentioned that Mr. Murdock confronted prices of felony mischief and reckless endangerment and that he and Ms. Greco confronted prices of felony trespass.
Ms. Valens mentioned Ms. Greco had been launched and that Mr. Murdock was nonetheless in custody and ready to be arraigned.
This was not the primary time a panicky passenger has pulled such a maneuver at a New York-area airport, however neither Delta, the F.A.A. nor the Port Authority, which operates La Guardia, might say on Monday simply how uncommon it was for somebody to make such an escape.
“This doesn’t occur day by day on the airport,” Ms. Valens mentioned.
Mr. Plummer mentioned he had seen Mr. Murdock standing after the airplane left the gate. “They appeared very nice,” Mr. Plummer mentioned of the couple.
Mr. Murdock advised a flight attendant that he couldn’t sit down due to his post-traumatic stress dysfunction, Mr. Plummer mentioned.
“If I sit down, I’ll freak out,” Mr. Murdock mentioned, in accordance with Mr. Plummer.
The flight attendant once more requested Mr. Murdock to take his seat, and once more he refused, Mr. Plummer mentioned. As an alternative, he started to stroll towards the entrance of the airplane, getting far sufficient that Mr. Plummer overpassed him.
The airplane, which had been scheduled to depart shortly earlier than 10 a.m., returned to the gate, the place the remaining passengers “deplaned usually and have been accommodated on alternate flights,” a Delta spokeswoman mentioned. (Mr. Plummer mentioned his departure was delayed a number of hours.)
Nobody was injured within the episode, the authorities mentioned. The canine was taken to an animal shelter in Brooklyn, and Ms. Greco was given a receipt that might permit her to retrieve it.
Probably the most well-known instance of an unauthorized sliding exit occurred 10 years in the past at Kennedy Worldwide Airport, with a JetBlue flight attendant who mentioned he had been concerned in a dispute with a passenger.
In that occasion, after asserting his intentions over the airplane’s public deal with system, the flight attendant activated an emergency slide, slid right down to the tarmac and threw his tie to the bottom as he walked away.
Extra lately, a traveler aboard a Florida-bound flight at Newark Liberty Worldwide Airport fled by an emergency exit and down an inflatable slide whereas the airplane was nonetheless on the gate in February 2018, in accordance with WNBC.
When officers arrived to arrest him, the person was yelling that he didn’t belong on the airplane as a result of it was not his flight, the tv station mentioned.