"He literally just flipped... nobody knows why."
A 44-year-old American has been arrested following a fistfight that occurred between passengers onboard an ANA flight from Tokyo to LA.
A video of the fight has gone viral online. Recorded by a passenger, the man in question can be seen wearing a red Hawaiian-style shirt and punching a man in a black T-shirt, who shouts, “go to hell! This guy is crazy!”
Punches are exchanged between the two passengers as other passengers shout “Hey guys, stop it. Get off this plane!”
A flight attendant can be seen trying to break up the fight but was allegedly choked by the man in the red shirt.
The incident occurred on All Nippon Airways Flight 6 aboard a Boeing 777 that was about to depart from Narita International Airport to Los Angeles International Airport.
The Straits Times reports that a police official at Narita, Mr Michihiko Aoi, said “a man of American nationality in his 40s was taken off NH6, as he had flown into a rage and caused trouble on the plane,” adding that the passenger was drunk.
Mr Aoi’s statement clarified that the man was not charged for the fistfight but for the violence towards the ANA official: “Today, we received several phone inquiries from the news media asking about the video taken inside the plane. The man was not charged over the incident recorded inside the plane, but because of the violence he inflicted on the ANA official, causing scratches on his forehead.”
“We can’t comment on the video as we don’t know who took it, and also there are other people appearing in it,” he added. “He was seen in the video, but we cannot confirm which one he is, or which colour shirt he wore.”
Corey Hour, the Arizona-based photographer and cinematographer who recorded the video told The Washington Post that the man in the red shirt started the fight. “He literally just flipped,” Hour told The Post, adding that the man threatened to kill the other passenger. “Nobody knows why.”
Hour told CNN: “The flight attendants actually got caught up in the mix, and that’s when the video ends, as I put my phone down and I actually got in the middle of everyone and confronted him.”