Nude, crazed airplane passenger

Today, a gentleman on an American Airlines from Boston to Los Angeles stripped naked, got dressed again, and then attempted to open the emergency exit door. He was then "subdued" by theNew England Revolution soccer team who were also on board. From The Boston Channel:
He was asked to go back to the bathroom to put his clothes on and he did and went back to his seat and then allegedly attempted to open an aircraft emergency exit door," (FBI spokesman Gary) Johnson said...

After the man was subdued, the flight was diverted to Oklahoma City and the man was taken into FBI custody, (American Airlines spokesman Tim) Wagner said.

The man, whose name was not immediately released, was put into flexible handcuffs by flight attendants and held until the plane landed.
Nude man disrupts flight (


  1. Hmmm, should we expect to have full psychological profiles on file before we’re allowed to fly, in the near future?

    Metal detectors and X-rays can’t detect “crazy,” after all.

  2. Actually, since people stripping naked can’t be prevented, the TSA will probably begin to REQUIRE it…

  3. I sure hope alcohol was not a factor, as it’s currently the only thing that makes long duration flights bearable for me. One or two more drunks getting out of hand and they’ll start talking about banning booze on planes.

  4. You know, I’m really irritated at the media coverage of this story that makes it sound as though everyone’s lives were at risk. Jetliners fly pressurized. Doors open inwards. He wasn’t going to get that thing open, seriously.

  5. I’ve been telling people to avoid American Airlines for years – this is what their ‘service’ does to you. This man’s actions were tame and rationale compared to what I contemplated the last time I was stuck flying with them.

  6. All of these are always “Tried to open a door.” It’s a trope of the in-flight freakout. Stripping off the clothes is another breakdown hallmark. Didja ever see “The Sixth Sense?”

  7. Okay, is anyone else weirded out that the author decided to specifically highlight that the handcuffs were FLEXIBLE?

  8. You know what? I’m tired of the media trying to act like being nude is a class one crime. Did they forget that they were born nude? The media have other things to make big deals about, like why does gas and milk seem to cost almost the same amount.

  9. “You know, he loves to fly and it shows.” funny #11 but I think that’s delta brother. Shit happens though. I fly American on a regular basis. Just imagine what stories Southwest Airlines has stored in the vault. Southwest is the Greyhound of the skies . Anyways… I’m getting used to flights being slow but I too would be slightly pissed off if my flight was mis-directed because of an contenential nut like that. Did he have a beard? Or Just a greek letter sweater? Bothe scream terrorist!

  10. Haha, I was flying home from LA when I overheard the flight attendant talking to the guy in front of me about this. She then went on to tell a story about another incident like that one. A woman was very drunk, and decided to take off all of her clothes, but apparently, the flight attendants just covered her with a blanket and the woman fell asleep. Oh, and I was flying Alaska.

  11. MDHatter 16: Does being gang-tackled by a soccer team qualify you for the mile-high club?

    No, but it does sound like fun, doesn’t it?

  12. I was on the flight, on my way out to to Cali to get ready for Comic Con…it was the single most ridiculous travel experience of my life, and I’ve had some doozies (including getting stuck on the Chunnel train).

    This guy had been apparently acting weird before we ever boarded, trying to go through the walkway before they had anyone get on…he tried sneaking behind the desk, etc. (That alone, if you asked some of my fellow passengers, was enough that ‘he should have been red flagged and not allowed on.’)

    When he came out nude, there was a bit of commotion, and I guess they threw a blanket over him in his row of seats to shield him while they convinced him to get dressed….it was a few minutes later when he tried opening the door and was manhandled by the Revs officials and others into his seat.

    Anyway, my favorite part was how they asked about a dozen people for their accounts of what happened once we hit the ground in OK City. It’s not like anyone at that part of the plane could see anything different.

    “Ma’am, please tell me what happened..”
    “Thank you. And you sir?”

    Lesson of the day: Nudity on the flight is only good in Airplane and for lovers.

  13. OH, and the other part—the couple sitting next to me had gotten off the flight before it started because the wife flipped out about flying, started hyperventilating, and ran off the plane. They were on their way to a honeymoon in Honolulu…I can only imagine her reaction if she had stayed on.

  14. On the bright side, at least everyone can be assured that he wasn’t carrying any concealed weapons.

  15. Wow. Use an unrelated story about a disturbed passenger to slam the TSA. I think you all are saying more about your collective need for attention.

    Szoback – interesting point you make about what your fellow passengers thought about his pre-flight behavior. However, if security did that kind of profiling, everyone here would be crying CIVLIB! CIVLIB! even though actual passengers travelers seem to be making those same judgments.

    Humans are biased. Racial/Ethnic/Behavioral profiling is just applying what is already on people’s minds.

  16. sorry I’m such an amateur at snark. I promise I’ll get better with a little practice.

    ‘you all’ was referring to those who want to drag out the antiauthority comments on unrelated topics. It makes it hard to take your concern seriously.

  17. Of course. But the best way to say ‘those’ is t-h-o-s-e. It’s lots better than ‘you all.’

  18. Was troubled at the lack of compassion shown by boing boing on this story. Obviously man was mentally ill. The truth is this – stripping- has happened many times before on airplanes which are places that trigger panic in people. That’s all. I get that on the face of it, it sounds funny, but the reality is that they handcuffed someone who was already in distress.

  19. Sounds like textbook Ambien and booze cocktail fallout. Did he try to eat his pillow? If so, yuck.

  20. Anonymous 41: He tried to open the emergency exit. Sorry for his distress, and perhaps they could have handled it better, but they did have to restrain him, for the safety of everyone in the cabin.

  21. Why is it that all i can think of is that after he got naked and stood before people he started talking;
    “Good now I have your attention, I would like to talk to you about the damage commercial aircraft do to the environment. If you like to look at graph 1.a tattoed on my thigh . . .”

  22. “Ladies and gentlemen, this is your captain streaking… welcome aboard flight 50-50″

  23. In response to #7 and #9: not all emergency exit doors open inward! For example, the rear exit doors on the Boeing 747 open outward. Also, aircraft designers are beginning to install outward-opening doors because inward-opening doors can be difficult to open in an emergency.

  24. Behavioral profiling rests on a seemingly simple basic premise: Beyond every terror threat there are people, and behind every person there’s a personality, a body and a face. If we could only read and analyze fast enough the cues emitted by the personalities, the faces and the bodies around us, we would be able to single out those who intend to harm us.

    Sounds promising, but behavioral profiling has as many detractors as proponents, and it is not going to be a shoe-in by any stretch of imagination.


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