An unruly passenger that brutally pummeled a flight attendant on a Southwest Airlines flight Sunday has been permanently banned by the airline, a Wednesday memo said.
The passenger, identified by police as a 28-year-old Vyvianna Quinonez, was banned for the attack that resulted in the flight attendant’s serious face injuries and a loss of two teeth.
“As we’ve communicated previously, we do have a process to permanently restrict passengers from traveling on Southwest, and please know that the passenger involved in the most recent incident has been advised that she may no longer fly on Southwest Airlines,” Southwest Airlines’ vice president of in-flight operations, Sonya Lacore, said in the Wednesday memo, USA Today reported.
Southwest Airlines has banned a woman seen on video punching a flight attendant in the face in an incident that highlighted a recent increase in unruly passengers. https://t.co/vlzBeLtcdQ
— CBS46 (@cbs46) May 28, 2021
Quinonez was also charged with battery causing serious bodily injury, a felony, the Port of San Diego Harbor Police Department said in a statement, according to USA Today. (RELATED: Footage Shows Flight Attendant Getting Violently Beaten Up By Passenger)
The footage of the incident shows Quinonez jump up from her seat and start punching the flight attendant in the face, while the passengers nearby try to pull the attacker down. The brawl is stopped by a man who forcefully intercedes, shouting, “Sit down, lady … don’t you dare touch her!”
“Please don’t mistake my lack of communication for my lack of work behind the scenes to ensure first and foremost, our flight attendant received immediate aid and ongoing care. I have been in contact with her, and we will continue to provide her the support she needs,” Lacore reportedly added in the statement, USA Today reported.
This attack underscored an “epidemic of aggression and assault,” as there have been 477 similar incidents involving unruly passengers on Southwest from April 8 to May 15, according to an open letter sent Monday to Southwest Airlines CEO and Chairman Gary Kelly.