Flight Diverted to Chicago After Passenger Lights Cigarette, Gets ‘Belligerent,’ Officials Say

GettyImages-167200362
David McNew/Getty Images

A cross-country flight was diverted to Chicago early Wednesday after a passenger lit a cigarette then became "belligerent" when a flight attendant told him to put it out, officials said.

Alaska Airlines flight 1138, headed from San Francisco to Philadelphia, landed at O'Hare International Airport at around 4:22 a.m. CST "due to a disruptive passenger onboard and out of an abundance of caution," a spokeswoman for the airline said in a statement.

Chicago police said the passenger lit up a cigarette, but put it out at the request of a flight attendant, and then proceeded to walk up and down the aisle of the plane "getting belligerent."

The man was escorted off the plane upon arrival at O'Hare, where he was handed over to law enforcement, according to the airline.

He was taken into federal custody and the case was not under Chicago police jurisdiction, CPD said. It was not immediately clear if any charges would be filed.

The plane refueled in Chicago and departed roughly an hour later, landing safely in Philadelphia at around 6:50 a.m. CST.

Contact Us