Unruly Passenger Forces Cross-Country Flight to Divert to Denver, Airline Says

Video shows passengers applauding when the man was removed from the plane.

ByABC News
February 10, 2016, 10:33 AM

— -- An Alaska Airlines flight made an unscheduled landing in Denver after a passenger became agitated and “issued a threat,” according to an Alaska Airlines spokesperson.

Scheduled to fly directly to San Diego, Flight 769 departed Boston Logan International Airport around 6:30 p.m. ET Tuesday night before a male passenger, whom the airline said was intoxicated, in row 13 became upset and began verbally abusing others on the flight, according to the airline.

The flight crew asked the disruptive man to calm down and intervened several times, the airline said, but the agitated passenger then threatened the safety of the flight.

The captain decided to land at the nearest airport “out of an abundance of caution,” according to the airline, causing a 45-minute delay for the flight.

Video of the incident shows passengers applauding when the unruly passenger was removed from the plane.

While the Denver airport called the incident a “customer service issue only,” the Federal Aviation Administration deemed it a “security issue.”

No arrests were made, according to the airport in Denver.

The flight landed in San Diego at 10:18 p.m. PT., according to flight tracking website FlightAware.com.