No Charges for Passenger Who Prompted La Guardia Emergency Landing


A passenger whose erratic conduct prompted pilots to make an emergency touchdown at La Guardia Airport on Saturday afternoon was not charged after the authorities decided that he “did not make a verbal threat” and was not carrying a suspicious merchandise, a spokesman for the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey mentioned.

The man, who was not recognized by the Port Authority Police Department, was briefly detained and questioned by the authorities, together with the F.B.I., after which launched, the spokesman, Thomas Topousis, mentioned on Sunday.

“The Port Authority Police Department determined there was no criminality,” Mr. Topousis mentioned in an announcement on Sunday.

Shortly earlier than 3 p.m. on Saturday, a pilot of the airplane, which was a Republic Airways plane working as American Flight 4817, instructed employees at a management tower at La Guardia Airport that he was “declaring an emergency,” in line with a recording posted on LiveATC.web.

“We have a situation where a person, a suspicious person, has an item that looks like an explosive device,” the pilot says, in line with the recording.

The pilot then says that he’s going to land. “We’re planning to turn off the runway, and then we will plan to evacuate,” he says, in line with the recording.

The pilot later says that crew members “don’t know what this person has,” including, “Everyone else is scared on this aircraft.”

After the airplane landed, firefighters and police personnel converged on the plane, which had traveled from Indianapolis with about 78 passengers aboard.

Passengers exited the airplane safely, mentioned a spokesman for the Federal Aviation Administration, Steve Kulm.

A Republic Airways spokesman, Jon Austin, mentioned on Saturday that an emergency was declared in response to unspecified passenger conduct close to the tip of the flight.

A video taken on the bottom confirmed emergency responders surrounding a person who was on his abdomen as passengers stood close by. In another video, evacuated passengers are instructed to “step back” to offer responders and the person area.

A passenger aboard the flight described a scene of pandemonium after the airplane landed. Fawad Khuja, who was seated within the fourth row, mentioned on Saturday that the airplane had braked quickly after it touched down and that passengers behind him began yelling to get off the airplane instantly.

He heard folks saying {that a} man had “a suspicious device.”

“People were panicking and getting shoved to the ground,” he mentioned. “The slide opened and I jumped out. People were sliding and rolling down to the floor. It was crazy.”

Alyssa Lukpat and Precious Fondren contributed reporting.