VIDEO: Passenger head-butts cabin crew after refusing to wear mask on flight
Video footage has captured the moment Ryanair passengers erupted into cheers when a drunken man was arrested after he head-butted an air steward on a flight from Tenerife to Manchester on January 29th, last Friday. Daniel Hendry aged 24, told airline staff: “F*** off, I'm going to punch you, going to smash your head in” after refusing to wear a mask.
Hendry, who had drunk three-quarters of a bottle of vodka, then head-butted a member of staff before 'stroking' a women's arm and attempting to hug her, a court heard earlier today. Air traffic controllers were called in an attempt to divert the flight amid his disruption, but the captain was unable to do so as many airports are closed due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Instead, the aircraft was 'accelerated' and arrived 25 minutes early at Manchester. Hendry was arrested as the plane landed and pleaded guilty to entering an aircraft when drunk, criminal damage and assault at Manchester Magistrates Court. The court was told how Hendry began his drunken tirade around one hour into the flight on Friday.
Footage captured by another passenger shows the mid-flight chaos, before a second clip shows Hendry being escorted from the flight by police officers. As he leaves the aircraft with his hands in the air, other passengers on board the flight begin to clap and cheer.
Prosecutor Janice Vallancee said Hendry had repeatedly refused to wear a mask at the request of Ryanair staff, before he became aggressive towards one of the cabin crew. It was later confirmed he had consumed three-quarters of a bottle of Smirnoff Vodka.
'He became aggressive with one of the cabin crew, Samuel Proietti, who was unable to hear some of the comments he was making due to his strong accent,' she said. 'He then headbutted Mr Proiretti, not making full contact though as he moved his head out of the way but Hendry connected with the right side of his face, but caused no visible injury.'
Hendry, who had been living in Tenerife, was travelling to stay with his girlfriend in Liverpool, was arrested on arrival in Manchester. He went on to cause damage to the police van by banging his head against the door and windows, the court heard.
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Defending, Rebecca Wrack said he 'fully accepts the prosecution case and doesn't seek to undermine what has been said.' The court was told that Hendry was due to appear through custody, but due to the fact he had travelled from abroad he was taken back to the police station where he appeared over a video link.
Hendry will now have to quarantine for two weeks as per the current Government guidelines.