Police: Woman 'fidgety, nervous' before trying to open plane door

James David Dickson
The Detroit News

Romulus — A woman who allegedly tried to open a plane door during a flight from Indianapolis to Detroit in mid-March had been behaving erratically before the incident and was restrained by three male passengers, according to a police report from Wayne County Airport Authority.

The report, obtained by The News Wednesday after a Freedom of Information Act request, details both the lead-up to the incident and its aftermath, which ended with no criminal charges, as authorities referred the woman for medical attention.

Just before 6:40 p.m. on March 18, officers arrived at Gate A63 of Metro Airport. The woman, whose age was redacted from the police report, was being held in the rear of the plane.

Officers told the flight crew to have all passengers not involved in the incident. They entered the plane and told the men to step away from the woman, and handcuffed her.

A flight attendant with Republic Airways told officers that the woman "was acting strange and nervous" before the flight took off from Indy.

The woman had requested to use at least one other passenger's cellphone, and asked the woman whose phone she borrowed if "she believed in a higher power." The woman, who was talking to her parents, then started crying and telling her parents that she loved them.

A second passenger told police that the woman was "acting strange, asking questions about passports" and was "really fidgety and seemed nervous."

During the flight, witnesses told police, the woman tried to open the rear door of the plane. That's when three men pulled her from the door and "laid on top of her until the plane landed" in Romulus, according to the report.

Police interviewed the woman. She said some of her fellow passengers told her she needed a boarding pass, and the others told her she didn't. When she came to believe that the plane was not headed to the correct destination, she tried to open the door. 

Police booked and fingerprinted the woman, and turned her over to the FBI. FBI officials determined "no charges would be filed," though their reasoning is redacted from the report.

Airport Authority police transported the woman to Beaumont Taylor hospital.