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Southwest Airlines: Flight diverted after man attempts mid-air exit

A passenger tried to leave his flight while in mid-air.
A passenger tried to leave his flight while in mid-air.
Southwest Airlines

A Southwest Airlines flight that left Chicago and was heading for Sacramento had to make an unscheduled stop in Nebraska after a passenger attempted a mid-air exit. The Associated Press reported on April 14, 2014, that the incident happened on Sunday, and the flight was forced to make the abrupt landing after witnesses say the passenger actually attempted to open a door.

Once landing at Eppley Airfield in Nebraska, the pilot said they had to "have an unruly passenger removed" before the flight could continue on to Sacramento.

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During the flight, witnesses said they heard a flight attendant screaming "Help me! Help me!" from the back of the plane. The man was attempting to open a rear door and exit the plane.

It was then that a doctor and some other passengers reacted to the situation.

"I ran to the back of the plane. At that point in time I was joined by about two other people," Dr. Scott Porter said. "We basically tackled the -- I don't want to say gentleman -- but the guy who was back there and pinned him down and restrained him."

Once they landed, air marshals put the man in handcuffs and led him off the plane.

Another passenger by the name of Monique Lawler said that the man had been acting strangely during the flight. She said he even came out of the bathroom soaking wet at one point.

Lawler said the passenger then went to the back of the Southwestern Airlines flight and tried to pry open the door.

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