Passenger attempts to open emergency door, flight attendant stabbed

A man from Leominster, Massachusetts, was arrested after an incident on a United Airlines flight from Los Angeles, California to Boston, Massachusetts on March 5. According to the U.S. Attorney's Office, 33-year-old Francisco Severo Torres has been charged with interference and attempted interference with flight crew members using a dangerous weapon.

The incident occurred during the last 45 minutes of the flight, when crew members were alerted that a door between the first class and coach sections of the aircraft had been disarmed. A flight attendant noticed Torres near the door moments before and reported that he believed Torres tampered with the door. After questioning, Torres allegedly got out of his seat, approached two flight attendants standing in the aisle, and thrust toward one of them in a stabbing motion with a broken metal spoon, striking the flight attendant on the neck three times. Passengers on board the flight restrained Torres until the plane landed, when he was taken into custody.

United Airlines has banned Torres from flying on their airline pending an investigation. If convicted, Torres could face up to life in prison, up to five years of supervised release and a fine up to $250,000.


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