Feds Say Unruly Passenger Tried to Stab Flight Attendant And Open Plane Door

A Massachusetts man is charged with trying to open an emergency escape door on a United Airlines flight on Sunday and stabbing a flight attendant with a broken spoon. He is now facing charges.

According to a criminal complaint, during the safety briefing on the Los Angeles-to-Boston trip, Francisco Severo Torres, 33, asked his seatmate “where on the safety card it stated where the [emergency escape] door handle was situated.” The crew was notified less than an hour before touchdown that an emergency door had been deactivated. Afterward, a flight attendant addressed Torres, who had previously been noticed lurking near the door.

The lawsuit adds that Torres asked the attendant “if there were cameras indicating” that he tampered with the door. Torres then approached two crew members and lunged at one of them with “a bright object,” subsequently determined to be the handle section of a metal spoon, striking the attendant three times in the neck. The U.S. Attorney’s Office in Massachusetts accused him of one count of interference and attempted interference with the flight crew and attendants while armed with a deadly weapon after landing.