Jiu-Jitsu can't help airline passenger
Federal authorities have declined to prosecute a man who tried to open a cabin door during a United flight from Los Angeles to Washington Dulles airport last night [story link].
Flight 890 was about two hours from Dulles when the man walked to the rear of the plane and flipped up the handle on the rear cabin door. Because those doors cannot open when a plane is in flight, nothing happened to the door. But the same cannot be said of the man. A federal investigator says he was immediately jumped by nearby passengers and beaten. "They roughed him up quite a bit," a federal official says.
However, after an investigation by the FBI, prosecutors declined to file charges. Federal agents said the man flipped the handle out of curiosity or boredom, not intending to cause any harm. "It was a stupid move. Something an eight-year-old kid would do," an FBI official says.
The official says the man, who spoke Portuguese and little English, was apparently a professional Jiu-Jitsu fighter and was described as walking around the cabin during the flight, trying to attract attention. "He was strutting his stuff," the official says.
Even though federal authorities won't prosecute, local prosecutors are considering some charges.
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