A 23-year-old man was detained for 60 days after groping two flight attendants and assaulting another on a plane in the United States. The case occurred in July 2021 on a Frontier Airlines flight from Philadelphia to Miami.
Maxwell Berry pleaded guilty to assault charges and, in addition to two months’ detention and a year’s probation, he received a $15,000 fine. He will have until August 2 to turn himself in, according to the American newspaper ABC News.
The episode happened after Berry ordered three drinks and leaned the empty glass against the back of a flight attendant, who asked him not to touch her. Maxwell spilled drink on his shirt and went to the bathroom shirtless. The boy walked around the cabin and groped the chests of two flight attendants as they tried to help him, according to the arrest report.
After starting a fight, Berry had to be restrained with silver duct tape – a standard airline method for holding someone out of control.
The lawyer, Jason Kreiss, claims that Maxwell is a “good man who committed a bad act, which was not planned”. The culprit apologized and took full responsibility for the actions in the trial yesterday, according to US TV WPLG.
The defense also says that, due to the repercussion of the case, the defendant is having difficulties finding a job. “Due to the tremendous media attention this case has attracted, Max’s efforts to find a job using his university degree in financial economics have been futile as he has been constantly denied the positions without explanation.”
Judge Robert Scola Jr. made it clear to Berry that flight attendants can’t feel unsafe at work because of events like this. Jordan Galarza and Tymerah Burgess, two of the staff on the flight, said after the hearing that the 60-day sentence is not enough.
“My number one role on any aircraft is to protect passengers, including Maxwell Berry, and we arrived in Miami safely that day,” Galarza said, according to the New York Post. “The people on that aircraft saw more justice happen than we saw today. I think it’s a disgusting miscarriage of justice, in my opinion.”
Woman restrained with duct tape in plane
Also last year, a woman received the biggest fine in FAA (United States Federal Aviation Administration) history after attacking crew and trying to open the door of an aircraft mid-flight. To be controlled, the crew had to tape the woman to a seat.