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Woman Fakes Sickness To Get A Bigger Seat On Flight Forcing Pilot To Make An Emergency Landing

By Kelsey Marie

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If you’ve ever thought about faking an illness to get a bigger seat on a flight, you may want to reconsider. 

On a recent American Eagle flight from Pensacola, Florida to Miami, a woman told staff that she was having trouble breathing. After the pilot became aware of the woman, he declared it an emergency and returned to the airport in Pensacola. 

“Once they got on the ground, she [the woman] made it clear that she was faking the medical condition to get a bigger seat,” recalls Mike Wood, Pensacola Police Department public information officer to NBC Miami. 

The flight returned to the Pensacola airport on November 29 around 6:30 a.m. and was grounded for over an hour because of the woman’s claimed difficulty to breathe. 

After landing, the woman refused to exit the aircraft, leading to the entire cabin being evacuated. 

A spokesperson for American Airlines, the parent company of American Eagle, released a statement saying, “All passengers deplaned normally at the gate through the main boarding door and onto the jet bridge. The passenger was subsequently removed by law enforcement and medical personnel, and the flight took off again at 7:41 a.m.”

The woman was detained by police under the Baker Act, “allowing officials to detain those suffering from mental illness who may pose a danger to themselves or others,” according to Travel + Leisure.

She has since been taken to a mental health facility and could be facing criminal charges.

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Kelsey Marie

Kelsey-Marie is an NYC girl who currently lives in Johannesburg, South Africa. You can keep up with her on Instagram at @kelseydashmarie

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