A company president slapped a 19-month-old toddler in the face while on a flight to Atlanta and demanded that the baby’s mother, who didn’t know this man, shut the child up. He also used a racial slur when referring to the crying tot, calling the African-American child the “N” word, according to the Daily Mail on Friday, Feb. 15, 2013.
Joe Ricky Hundley, 60, has been charged with simple assault after striking Jonah Bennett in front of his mother, Jessica Bennett, and other passengers aboard the Delta flight. The baby’s mother said the altitude change caused her toddler to cry when the flight from Minneapolis to Atlanta started descending to land. The baby was in his mother’s arms at the time the man, who was in a neighboring seat, slapped the child in the face, using an open hand.
When the stranger slapped the child, this caused the toddler to scream even louder as the plane prepared to land. The mother reports the slap also left a scratch below the baby’s right eye. If Hundley is convicted of the simple assault he faces a maximum of one year in jail.
Hundley, who is the president of an Idaho based aircraft parts manufacturer, claims he did ask the mother to quiet the child. The 60-year-old “reeked of alcohol,” according to the baby’s mother and he was stumbling around after consuming several double vodkas during the flight.
Other passengers came to the mother and baby’s aid after they’d heard the derogatory words and witnessed the baby being slapped. This isn’t the first time this aircraft manufacturer executive has been charged with simple assault. In 2007 he plead guilty to the same charge after he was arrested for fighting with his girlfriend.