Woman claims sexual assault on red-eye flight to Charlotte


A 33-year-old woman was flying a red-eye flight from San Diego to Charlotte, North Carolina, on Monday when a stranger took the seat next to her younger sister.

>> Read more trending news 

She said they were instantly nervous when he first spoke to them.

"He said, 'I get to sit next to the two most beautiful women on the plane,' and we were concerned," the woman, who did not want to be identified, told WSOC-TV.

The direct flight was more than four hours long, leaving late Monday from San Diego and arriving early Tuesday morning in Charlotte.

As the American Airlines flight was just taking off, the victim told WSOC the man leaned over.

"He actually reached over, over the top of the armrest that was separating he and I, and just basically rubbed down my entire thigh," she said.

She said one of his fingers briefly got caught in a hole in her jeans.

Her sister, seated in the window seat, told her to call the flight attendant. Instead, she wanted to handle it quietly.

"I hit his arm away from me, and just you know, made it very clear, do not touch me," she said.

The man mumbled something and she moved as close to her sister as possible, then later, fell asleep.

Earlier, she had noticed the smell of alcohol on the man's breath, but didn't think he was acting drunk.

She was jolted awake about an hour into the flight.

"I woke up to him completely on top of my left side. He had his arms on me and I was hitting him," she said.

She pressed the button for the flight attendant, who took the man to the front of the plane. She didn't see him again until they landed in Charlotte, and police were talking to him at the gate.

"The bruises came up the next morning, and I didn't know those were there, from kind of fighting him off of me," she said.

WSOC reached out to American Airlines Thursday, but did not receive a response.

The district attorney in San Diego said the office is not involved in the investigation.

>> Related: Delta will now pay passengers up to $9,950 to give up seats

It's not clear if the suspect has been identified. A report was filed with the Charlotte-Mecklenburg police, but the department told WSOC there were no arrests.

>> Related: Woman claims Delta paid her $4,000 to give up seat on overbooked flight


Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Nation World

Five undocumented immigrants dead after chase with Border Patrol, officials say
Five undocumented immigrants dead after chase with Border Patrol, officials say

Five undocumented immigrants died in a chase with Border Patrol agents Sunday afternoon after the driver of the SUV they were traveling in lost control and crashed, investigators said. There were 14 people in the Suburban, 12 were undocumented immigrants who were ejected when the vehicle crashed and rolled over, according to WOAI.  Four people...
Dead great white shark washes ashore on California beach
Dead great white shark washes ashore on California beach

A dead great white shark washed ashore Sunday morning on a California beach.  The adult male shark was found around 7 a.m. with multiple cuts on its face but nothing that appeared life-threatening, officials told KSBW.  The carcass was removed from the beach and a necropsy will be conducted to determine the cause of death.
Cardi B, Offset pose for risque Rolling Stone cover
Cardi B, Offset pose for risque Rolling Stone cover

In the year since “Bodak Yellow” arrived, Cardi B has escalated from projected one-hit wonder to ubiquitous charmer. Her frank talk and unapologetic attitude toward her past as a stripper have only bolstered her internet appeal; she’s landed everywhere from “Saturday Night Live” to Howard Stern’s SiriusXM radio show...
Small earthquake detected in Mexico City after national team beats Germany 
Small earthquake detected in Mexico City after national team beats Germany 

Fans cheering the national team’s win over Germany created an “artificial quake” that tipped the Richter scale, according to reports.  Seismologists at two monitoring stations in Mexico City picked up readings when Hirving Lozano scored 35 minutes into Mexico’s 1-0 upset over defending champion Germany Sunday...
Truck fatally hits two children at mud bogging event, officials say
Truck fatally hits two children at mud bogging event, officials say

Two children, 15 and 10 years old, were hit and killed at a mudding event in Middle Georgia when a driver lost control of his truck due to a mechanical failure, the Georgia State Patrol said. An 11-year-old was hit and injured in the incident Saturday night at the South Creek Mud Boggin’ in Milledgeville, according to the GSP. Shortly before...
More Stories