68-Year Old Punches Teen For Not Turning Off iPhone On Flight

A 68-year old man was arrested for punching a teenager after the kid wouldn’t turn off his iPhone during the final approach for landing.

Flight attendants announced, as usual, that the flight was getting ready for a final descent and that all gizmos and whatzits were to be turned off. The teen, who was bipping and bopping along to his music and fiddling around with some kind of “game” on his “iPhone,” ignored the request.

The man got angry at the whippersnapper and started an in-flight fracas, which left the snot-nosed punk with a mark on his arm, according to police. The pilot radioed air traffic control and had cops waiting for the man when they arrived at the gate.

The man, whose face has white whiskers and a beard on it, was charged with one count of misdemeanor battery.

Cops: Man punches teen on flight during iPhone kerfuffle [KBOI2] (Thanks to GitEmSteveDave!)

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  1. BayardMozie says:

    Kudos to this geezer for doing what I have often dreamed about doing myself.

    …although the worst I would probably do is rat out the kid to a flight attendant – if using phones on planes was really a big danger, they would be falling out of the sky all the time!

    • Portlandia says:

      You often dream of assaulting someone who isn’t obeying a useless rule that has zero effectiveness?

      Do you also dream of assaulting people that don’t comply with receipt checkers?

      • Beeker26 says:

        Yes, I do.

      • qwickone says:

        It’s my understanding that those rules are really about putting things away. Since taking off and landing are the most dangerous parts of flying, they dont want a whole bunch of loose objects flying around if something goes wrong.

        That said, it irritates me when people think the rules don’t apply to them, but when I feel myself really getting aggravated, I remind myself not to sweat the small stuff, not punch them.

        • not-gonna-tell-ya says:

          Then where does all of the newspaper come from when you see a crash or de-pressurization on tv?>?? :)

          • Kitamura says:

            TV needs to be dramatic for viewers, why do you think zombies are all Olympic sprinters and that vampires explode into balls of fire when killed these days?

            Going to agree that the whole no electronics is probably there more for the, in the off chance the plane does crash and people survive, you don’t want shit all over the place while trying to make your exit from the burning plane.

        • RvLeshrac says:

          Those damned blacks, always trying to drink at the white fountains and use the white bathrooms. Why can’t they just accept that the rules apply to all of us?!
          ——

          Sure, using your phone isn’t the same as basic civil rights, but if you don’t fight against stupid laws, they’ll continue to get worse. Eventually, the TSA will be cupping your balls every time you get on a f… oh, right.

          • wastedlife says:

            Erm, this isn’t a new rule by the TSA or anything. This is a long-standing rule intended for safety. The belief is that electronics may cause interference with the plane’s equipment. While it is highly unlikely this would happen (and IIRC Mythbusters busted this one), it is unlikely to be changed just so people can use their phones and other electronics for a few minutes during takeoff and landing.

            • kabamm says:

              Mythbusters actually confirmed that “cell phone signals, specifically those in the 800-900 MHz range, did intefere with unshielded cockpit instrumentation. Because older aircraft with unshielded wiring can be affected, and because of the possible problems that may arise by having many airborne cell phones “seeing” multiple cell phone towers, the FCC (via enforcement through the FAA) still deems it best to err on the safe side and prohibit the use of cell phones while airborne.”

              • pawnblue says:

                Umm, have you been to an airport lately? They want to field strip you in case you have a dangerous item.

                If cellphones were actually dangerous, they wouldn’t allow them on the plane. Otherwise, people would use them against airplanes.

                The most reasonable post is that you could drop it during landing. They don’t want to be blamed for lost cellphones or someone getting hit with a flying cellphone. But instead of explaining that, they claim it has the power to crash the plane. Otherwise people won’t listen.

                • kabamm says:

                  No, they claim there is a small and unacceptable risk in older aircraft. Pay attention. I’m fully aware of the TSA nonsense and I’m scientifically literate. I fly often. I always power off my smartphone during take-off and landing. I wouldn’t have smacked this kid, but I’d have gotten his attention because he was risking MY safety.

            • Happy Tinfoil Cat says:

              The actual reason for having cell phones turned off is because cell phone usage greatly decreases the airline’s capability…to charge you $$$ to use their phone. The old cell towers had a difficult time handing off calls moving through their so fast and being at altitude, the cell phone had line of sight to a huge number of towers.

          • coren says:

            …you just really compared using your phone on an airplane to CIVIL RIGHTS? Really?

            • Jasen says:

              Personal freedoms *are* a civil right. Civil rights is an extremely broad topic and is not simply ‘racial tolerance’ as many seem to think these days.
              It’s not nearly as important as the right of equality for race/religion/etc, but it is still in the same class of rights, so the OP was completely correct to call it such.

              There’s still not much comparison between them in terms of importance, naturally.

      • jkinatl2 says:

        I absolutely agree that those rules are arbitrary and without much merit. And I think that questioning and even confronting absurd authority is our duty as citizens.

        I also think that drafting a plane full of other people to unwillingly join you in that fight because you decide to be entitled, and costing people their connections, their time, their vacations and/or business appointments and/or funerals, et al, is where the line between revolutionary and douche-y gets crossed.

        I get to decide when and where to fight for my liberties. And I only get to make that choice for myself. When I force other people to suffer because of my choice, I am being an asshole. An asshole on the side of righteousness? Maybe. But still, asking for a punch in the face from my fellow downtrodden, and an arresting officer acting for The State.

        You wanna change the world? Great! You will suffer in the process. That’s the price of freedom.

        I do not, however, think that this 15 year old was making a statement about our ridiculous rules and the power we give to those unqualified to use logic and reason. I think he was an entitled d-bag who wanted what he wanted, when he wanted it, and the rest of the plane, the world, be damned.

      • Ocyrus says:

        The “no electronics” on take-off and arrival is a long-stand rule that may actually save your life, and that of everyone else on the plane. Just because you are ignorant to the workings of an aircraft and its electrical and electronic systems, doesn’t mean that the rule is not based in reality.
        If you were found to have broken that rule and caused the death of one of my loved ones, you’d better believe I’d be suing your family for everything and anything you leave behind.

        • dragonhunter21 says:

          The only thing that a cellphone might do to an airplane is make the altimeter read a bit low. There’s never been a single airplane crash that was blamed on cellphone usage.

          I believe the word is technophobia.

          • c!tizen says:

            This is what Faraday cages are for. If a cell phone could, in any way, shape, form, or fashion, bring down an aircraft then they wouldn’t allow it near an airport, let alone on the plane.

          • Panoptic says:

            Not to mention he could have had the phone in “airplane” mode, which turns off all the radios…

            • kabamm says:

              Irrelevant. All personal electronics must be shut off during takeoff and landing – airplane mode is for use during the flight, not during take-off or landing.

              • Chaosium says:

                “Irrelevant. All personal electronics must be shut off during takeoff and landing – airplane mode is for use during the flight, not during take-off or landing.”

                What’s irrelevant is Rule of Law being trotted out to counter science. Sure, you SHOULD, but it’s safety theater.

        • c!tizen says:

          it’s not based in reality, at least not the reality you’re talking about. Unless it’s packed with C4 a cell phone can’t bring down an aircraft, period. The reason for this rule, at least the most plausible reason that I’ve been given, is that if you’ve got your earphone on you won’t be able to hear instructions given by the flight crew if needed.

        • bluline says:

          I’ve neglected to turn off my cell phone numerous times when flying, and no plane I’ve been on has crashed yet because of it.

        • bluline says:

          I’ve neglected to turn off my cell phone numerous times when flying, and no plane I’ve been on has crashed yet because of it.

          • lemur says:

            I’ve run through a red light once, and no one was hurt.

            I’ve failed to stop at a stop sign once, and no one was hurt.

            I’ve spilled a small amount of oil on my range once. It caught on fire but no one was hurt.

            Therefore, from now on I’m going to run red lights, not stop at stop signs, carelessly spill oil all over the range, etc.

            • Chaosium says:

              Your comparison is incredibly inaccurate because while all the things YOU mentioned are dangerous, phones are not dangerous to aeronautical equipment.

              • kabamm says:

                You don’t know what you are talking about. It is not proven that cell phone use is completely safe during take-off and landing.

        • Portlandia says:

          Please site one, just one, airplane crash that was the result of an electronic device being used during take off and landing.

          • DanGarion says:

            Please site one, just one instance that a plane was used as a weapon to topple a building. Oh wait.

      • Griking says:

        Too bad you you can’t just pick the laws you want to follow.

        • th3v6cann3val0s3 says:

          WTF? Too bad you can’t TAKE THE LAW INTO YOUR OWN HANDS. AT the same time TOO BAD

          Good thing he picked a meek 15 yr old kid to hit. Wonder if he would have done the same to a 20 yr old or a 30 yr old.

          Unsung hero, my ass.

    • Jasen says:

      although the worst I would probably do is rat out the kid to a flight attendant

      And that is the correct response. Assaulting the kid was obviously illegal, and now this guy gets to pay for taking the violent route.

    • jefeloco says:

      Funny how the Mistakesman tells a different story entirely, including details on when the altercation happened during the flight. Got to post this since I live in the Boise area.

      http://www.idahostatesman.com/2010/12/28/1469875/man-punches-teen-on-plane-in-phone.html

  2. Buckus says:

    You don’t mess with the Santa! You’ll lose every time. Guaranteed.

  3. bassbeast says:

    Good. I hate when people don’t listen to the instructions of the cabin crew. The kid asked for it, and if hi parents won’t do it, someone else had to.

    (No, I don’t advocate violence against others, but the kid’s parents obviously haven’t gotten involved enough in his life to let him know that there are times you have to be a conformist, no matter what his crappy music tells him to. Dang whippersnappers! And I’m 30… God, what happened to me once I had a kid?…)

    • pecan 3.14159265 says:

      Um, okay. First, there’s no indication he was doing anything wrong. He might have missed the announcement. If you miss a phone call, how would you feel about being punched in the arm?

      • c!tizen says:

        beats being punched in the balls?

      • megafly says:

        oh, boo hoo my widdle punkin arm has a bruise!! what will all the other ladies at the cotillion think!

        The kid should man up and let it slide. He got schooled by a geezer and should slink off to be embarassed in the shadows

        • JJ! says:

          I don’t think he should just “let it slide.” Being older doesn’t give you the right to hit people who do things you don’t like. There are a lot of other options that could be used before punching him.

        • Happy Tinfoil Cat says:

          I’m over 50, when can I start punching children?

    • GuyGuidoEyesSteveDaveâ„¢ says:

      He was an un-accompanied minor.

      • speedwell (propagandist and secular snarkist) says:

        What? He was carrying his accompaniment around with him; that was sort of the point, eh?

        • MrEvil says:

          un accompanied minors are children whose parents are either too cheap to fly with their kids or can’t afford it. Just one more thing to make air travel miserable. Main reason I like the more business oriented flights like Austin to San Jose on a weekday.

          If I were said kid on a flight with my mom and dad there wouldn’t have been need for a stranger to slap me upside the head. I’d have been rolling in the aisle so fast people would be wondering WTF just happened.

          I’m not saying beat your kids, but my folks used to slap me upside the head all the time to get me to knock my crap off. I turned out a winner. Well, a winner that swears alot.

          • jefeloco says:

            I hate to barge in here, but I flew several times alone as a child, not because my parents couldn’t afford another seat or because they were cheap though. I had one parent who lived in Minnesota and one who lived in Utah (and later Idaho) and it wouldn’t make sense for one or the other to accompany me when going back and forth for the summer and other holidays.

            I know that this doesn’t add to the story but I get annoyed when people assign closed answers to an open situation that don’t apply in real life.

          • speedwell (propagandist and secular snarkist) says:

            Um… accompaniment… music… oh, what the hell’s the use, any joke you have to explain…

          • Happy Tinfoil Cat says:

            I’m sending one kid to Germany and another to China for the summer. Do you expect me to fly with them? One is visiting relatives and the other is an exchange student. I need to stay at work earning the money to pay for it all.

    • Dover says:

      Fisticuffs was uncalled for. Someone should have tapped the kid on the shoulder to let him know about the announcement if he didn’t hear it and then reported him to a flight attendant if he didn’t comply. If he didn’t listen, it may have been the teenager arrested.

      Instead, some crotchety senior decided to take matters into his own hands and bypass the perfectly capable system in place to deal with these matters.

    • George4478 says:

      >> I hate when people don’t listen to the instructions of the cabin crew. The kid asked for it,

      I would like to follow you around for a day. Every time you break a rule – BAM! A stranger (me) gets to punch you.

      You are, after all, asking to be assaulted.

    • msbask says:

      You don’t advocate violence? Could’ve fooled me.

  4. obits3 says:

    I wonder which will cause more issues in landing the plane:

    1) An iPhone
    2) Two guys fighting

    Cost > Benefits, FAIL!

    • regis-s says:

      Unless the two guys fighting are in the cockpit why would either of them affect the landing of an airliner? A two seat Cessna, sure.

      • obits3 says:

        It causes the flight attendants to have to deal with a fight when they should be making sure everyone is safe for landing.

        • pop top says:

          Distracted flight attendants won’t keep the plane in the air.

          • SabreDC says:

            Why does it have to be one extreme or the other? Of course the plane won’t fall out of the sky if the flight attendants are distracted. But what if an overhead compartment wasn’t secured prior to landing (because the attendant was distracted by a passenger) and something came out and seriously hurt someone? What if this kid was that into listening to music and playing his game that he didn’t realize that the suitcase falling out of the overhead bin was going to hit him?

            Sometimes being alert and aware of the surroundings is more important than absolutely having to play on your iphone for 5 minutes.

            • pop top says:

              “Of course the plane won’t fall out of the sky if the flight attendants are distracted.”

              That’s not what I was saying. Distracted flight attendants won’t keep the plane from landing, which is what the OP implied would happen if a FA was distracted.

              • coren says:

                Not so much. They said nothing about the plane flying or not, but about passenger safety, which distracted personnel would have an impact on

      • Chaosium says:

        “Unless the two guys fighting are in the cockpit why would either of them affect the landing of an airliner? A two seat Cessna, sure.”

        Irrelevant. It has more effectiveness than an iPhone, on airplane mode or not.

  5. Midwest Doc says:

    nd ths str s rlvnt t ths wb st bcs …

  6. hills says:

    Unsung Hero? Really? I didn’t read where the ipod boy was given a tap on the shoulder and reminded to turn off his ipod by a flight attendant – it sounds like he didn’t hear the instructions, not that he was necessarily doing it on purpose…. It’s not like he pulled a Josh Duhamel – no reason to get violent. Old dude needs to chill out.

  7. Cameraman says:

    Let he who has never been cooped up in a small space with a teenager and not wanted to punch him cast the first stone.

    • Portlandia says:

      You’re the same person that said you would beat to a pulp anyone who touched your kid.

      So, now someone has assaulted some other person’s kid and you’re okay with it?

      • Cameraman says:

        You are right. I should have appended that last comment with a LOL to make sure everyone knew I was joking. The internet needs a sarcasm font.

        I am glad you remembered a comment I made, like, a few months ago. And thus I achieve internet immortality.

        • Portlandia says:

          Haha, well when you have photo it makes you far more “memorable”.

          I recall reading that post and thinking “he looks like one scary dude”. I mean that in a nicest way possible, I’m sure you’re just a big teddy bear…but your gaze in that photo is kinda intense.

          Thanks for the reply!

  8. pecan 3.14159265 says:

    Did the teenager “refuse” to comply with the intercom announcement or did he just not hear it? It’s not unreasonable to be listening to music and not hear what’s being said. I listen to music on my ride home sometimes and can’t always hear the station stop being called.

    One portion of the article states, “Russell Miller punched a 15-year-old teenager after he refused to turn off his cell phone, an iPhone” and another portion states, “When the teenager didn’t respond to the intercom request, witnesses say the man got angry”

    “Refuse” and “didn’t respond” are very different things.

  9. CherieBerry says:

    Why did this old bully earn the ‘unsung hero’ tag? The kid’s iPhone is not going to interfere with the flight – but the unmanaged anger of this senior citizen will. I can only imagine what this man was like as a father. I’m sure half of his adult children no longer speak to him.

    • jeepguy57 says:

      It doesn’t matter whether it affects the flight or not – its a rule and must be obeyed. If I pull up to a red light, even though no other cars are going through the intersection, does that mean the red light doesn’t apply?

      I’ve been on flights twice where the person next to me (once a teen and the other a twenty-something) chose to ignore the cell phone ban. In both cases the flight attendant eventually caught them and forced them to put it away.

      Its just another example of entitlement in this country.

      • CherieBerry says:

        It is not his place to enforce rules.

        • jeepguy57 says:

          Wrong – theoretically, you are supposed to turn off electronics devices for safety reasons. Whether it actually matters or not is insignificant. We are all responsible for ensuring safety rules are enforced.

          Violence, however, was probably not necessary unless the kid got lippy. In which case, he probably had it coming.

          • c!tizen says:

            you for the “dagnabbit”

          • shepd says:

            Wrong — vigilantism is illegal in all cases. But, it’s especially egregious when it involves assault for something so minor. This is the kind of person that will kill someone someday because they did something that upset them. Imprison the scum.

          • Chaosium says:

            “Wrong – theoretically, you are supposed to turn off electronics devices for safety reasons. Whether it actually matters or not is insignificant. We are all responsible for ensuring safety rules are enforced.”

            Fuck no, you’re not. We are responsible for ensuring safety rules that involve SAFETY are enforced.

            This rule is not related to safety. It is related to convenience, and the pleasure of the other guests. It is related to the illusion of safety, but offers no tangible benefits to that end.

      • speedwell (propagandist and secular snarkist) says:

        “A rule that must be obeyed”… kind of like the rule that you aren’t supposed to assault people?

  10. VOIDMunashii says:

    Normally I am all for decking idiots who are incapable of staying off their mobile, but it doesn’t sound like he was actually using it as a phone. As I have no objection to playing video games, and also do not believe they have any effect on the operation of an airplane, I have to side with the “snot-nosed punk” here.

    I was kind of hoping it would be Epic Beard Man though

    • jeepguy57 says:

      It doesn’t matter if he was using at a phone or not – on final approach, all electronic devices must be turned off.

      As I said in another reply, it doesn’t matter if, technically, these gadgets have any affect on the flight – its a rule, plain and simple.

      • speedwell (propagandist and secular snarkist) says:

        Yeah, I noticed you’re defending the violent old fool.

        • jeepguy57 says:

          No, not defending his actions of violence. He could have addressed the issue better, but I am tired of the people saying the devices don’t actually affect anything. That’s an insignificant point. Both the teen and the old man were in the wrong.

          • c!tizen says:

            I disagree, if a rule is not based in logic and fact it should be questioned and disobeyed. I’ll site the TSA as my example. They have a 70% failure rate in detecting harmful devices, they waste time and tax payer money. They are imposed as a “security” measure that delivers little to no security. Much like the phone rule, they are based in the good old “scare tactic” approach. There are better ways to get to what these rules are trying to accomplish.

            A phone has never brought down a plane, the TSA has never stopped an attack. Those are facts. Blindly following rules helps no one.

          • za7ch says:

            “I am tired of the people saying the devices don’t actually affect anything. That’s an insignificant point.”

            You know what I’m tired of? People who unquestioningly appeal to authority and call for the unruly to “obey” because they’re “the rules” without seeing if they are even worthy of being rules in the first place. At least we can agree that we’re both tired, right?

            • seeknay says:

              The rule serves purpose. Even if it is only to get ALL passengers to pay attention to all instructions given during Take-Off and Landing, it is still a purpose. Not paying attention could not only risk your own life but everyones on the plane.

              And asking for examples is a dumb question. It is a preventative measure.

      • Dover says:

        Are you excusing the old man’s behavior? Because it’s also a rule that you shouldn’t punch people. Two wrongs ≠ a right.

  11. savvy9999 says:

    Pfft. I punch my own teenagers at home.

  12. horns says:

    Bet the kid will turn his phone off next time.

  13. speedwell (propagandist and secular snarkist) says:

    I’m flat amazed at the number of people who show their hatred for teenagers by crowing that the kid got his comeuppance and the old guy did exactly what they themselves would do. I’m sure the same people would be going nuts with rage if the teen was the one who punched the old guy.

    • Portlandia says:

      Excellent point.

      One of the posters made it very clear in a different article (about a teacher disciplining a student with corporal punishment IIRC) that if anyone touched their child they would beat them up but has already posted they were okay with it.

      • Cameraman says:

        I wasn’t okay with it, and I hope the old guy gets jail time or at the very least counseling and probation. I would be lying if I said this story didn’t cause a funny mental image in my head.

        I can Smokey and the Bandit on TV without wanting to outrun cops or wear a silly hat, too.

    • Hoss says:

      I don’t know any culture that doesn’t respect an older person versus a disobedient punk

      • Dover says:

        There’s nothing in the article that makes me believe that the teenager was disobedient or a punk, I got the impression that the kid just didn’t hear the announcement. The gentleman who threw the punch was way out of bounds.

        • Hoss says:

          So the gentleman that hit the kid on the arm did so without pointing out that the intercom reminder was about him?

          • Pax says:

            The articles don’t say, EITHER WAY … yet nonetheless here you are, fabricating entire scenarios out of thin air, to fulfill your fantasy in which the boy – being a teenager – must be the one more in the wrong, because of course all teenagers are punks, and insolent, and disobedient.

            And then ignoring the simple fact that, no matter WHAT the boy did – short of hitting the old man first – the older guy should never have picked his hands up to the kid. Period.

      • Chaosium says:

        “I don’t know any culture that doesn’t respect an older person versus a disobedient punk “

        Crazy/bitter/horrible old people exist too.

    • za7ch says:

      Ageism.

  14. qbubbles says:

    Can I punch annoying old men?? Pleeeeease!??

    The next old fuck who tells me that “Spacebook” is going to get me fired, I’m going to punch in the face.

    • outis says:

      In the update we’ll find out the kid had the volume up to drown out the snoring of some old guy who had tired himself out complaining about how in his day they didn’t allow colored flight attendants.

    • c!tizen says:

      Well why can’t you just stay the hell off of Spacebook? It’s not like it’s Okey McDokey Skiddley Doo.

  15. quadmama says:

    Ummm…maybe his iPhone was in “Airplane Mode?” The article doesn’t specifically address this.

  16. Hoss says:

    Is kerfuffle an everyday word in Idaho?

  17. toddkravos says:

    oh fer crying outloud. plain and simple, this old man got what he deserved. he assaulted a child. regardless of the reason. how ANYONE can condone that behaviour is clearly not a person who has dealt with violence by an adult.

    get a clue.

  18. rubicthecube says:

    Cell phones & other electronic devices interfere with radio signals; the thing is, sometimes all you hear is a little beep and sometimes all you hear is that wierd sound your car radio does just before you receive a call. If you’re a pilot trying to hear instructions on where and how to safely land the plane, even a second of interrupted communication can be disastrous. So for those of you who think that this is no big deal, it is a big deal. What this kid was telling the whole plane by not turning off his phone was, “I don’t care if me using my phone jeopardizes our lives, I’m going to do it anyway.” If all this insubordinate douche-nozzle received was a punch, he got off easy.

    • RandomMutterings says:

      Please feel free to provide scientific evidence for this statement. I would be surprised if you could do so. MOST electronics in an airplane are harmless to the avionics and communications systems aboard. Old style ‘2 way’ pagers might be an exception.

      Digital cell phones certainly are harmless — as are iDevices/Wifi operating at 2400 MHz. It all has to do with the frequency and modulation techniques used for air-air and air-ground communications — these are typically from about 118 MHz to 137 MHz. Aircraft radios are also exceptionally well shielded against interference. By contrast, cell phones operate in 800, 900 or higher MHz bands and do not radiate in the 118 – 137 MHz range. Wifi operates at ranges of approximately 2400 MHz. Some more modern ‘short range’ wireless data services operate at approximately 5000 MHz.

      Since it’s hard to make sure of 100% safety the rule is, by design, exceptionally overbroad. Is there ever any danger due to ‘left on’ iPhones, etc.? No way. Should the kid have turned off his tunes? Sure. But not because of any real danger.

    • Chaosium says:

      “Cell phones & other electronic devices interfere with radio signals”

      Not aeronautics-grade equipment.

  19. Angry JD says:

    Why didn’t they arrest the kid for not following the directions of the flight crew? Hurray for the 68 year old! I wish we had more upstanding citizens like him doling out in flight justice.

    • MarkSweat says:

      “doling out in flight justice”???

      Justice? Please. The fact that you even use that word means you have no idea what justice is. “Justice” is not being assaulted for a (possibly uninentional) violation of a minor rule.

      Justice was done here. The jackass was arrested for assault.

    • haggis for the soul says:

      So the next time you go a bit over the speed limit, it’s okay for somebody to punch you?

  20. VeritasNoir says:

    The violent old man deserves to be detained for a while longer. Maybe give him a few weeks to cool down.

  21. Cheap Sniveler: Sponsored by JustAnswer.comâ„¢ says:

    “The pilot radioed air traffic control and had cops waiting for the man when they arrived at the gate.”

    Who gave him a pat on the back and a medal, right?

    • MarkSweat says:

      Probably more of a pat down rather than a pat on the back. And, rather than give him a medal, he probably got some metal (around the wrists.)

  22. Gladeye says:

    An arm mark?! uh oh.

  23. YokoOhNo says:

    I don’t agree with the guy touching the kid…i prefer verbal abuse when dealing with wiseass teens. it’s easier when they actually demonstrate their stupidity in front of others…

  24. Me - now with more humidity says:

    Another report from someone on the flight when this happened said the old guy had been loud and belligerent in the airport and during the flight, and seemed to be drunk.

  25. RandomMutterings says:

    The plane was never in any danger. MOST electronics in an airplane are harmless to the avionics and communications systems aboard. Old style ‘2 way’ analog pagers might be an exception.

    Digital cell phones certainly are harmless — as are iDevices/Wifi operating at 2400 MHz. It all has to do with the frequency and modulation techniques used for air-air and air-ground communications — these are typically from about 118 MHz to 137 MHz and use analog modulations that are very tolerant to interference. Aircraft radios are also exceptionally well shielded against interference coming from the plane.

    By contrast, cell phones operate in 800, 900 or higher MHz bands in a narrow, digital modulated signal and do not radiate in the 118 – 137 MHz range. Wifi operates at ranges of approximately 2400 MHz. Some more modern ‘short range’ wireless data services operate at approximately 5000 MHz.

    Since it’s hard to make sure of 100% safety the rule is, by design, exceptionally overbroad so that it is easy to interpret. That makes it an effective (but stupid) rule.
    Was there ever any danger due to ‘left on’ iPhone during landing due to interference? No way. Should the kid have turned off his tunes? Sure. But not because of any real danger. FWIW – I agree the flight attendant should have been called and oppose the passenger hitting the other.

  26. lucky13 says:

    I’m not that old (yet) but hardly a day goes by when I don’t want to punch some snot-nosed teenager!

  27. Ocyrus says:

    Hitting the kid was not the way to go… there’s a Flight Attendent call button at every seat, use it and rat the little puke out, no need to be violent.

  28. Joeypants says:

    This story was much more satisfying before you level-headed commentors ruined it for me with your “truth”.

    I was already picturing some punk tattooed kid looking like Rat from Crocodile Dundee, refusing to stop headbanging until he gets punched in the face by Super Senior Citizen, whose single punch forces the miscreant to bleed down to ripped death metal shirt.

  29. RandomHookup says:

    Note that he didn’t say you should hit the teenager…just that we have all wanted to.

  30. ThatsWhatSheSaid says:

    first of all the iphone like many phones has a mode called airplane mode, which basically allows u to only use the phone its self, no out going or incomming data signals etc…so if he was just listening to music, nothing is going to happen…if its “safe” to use your laptop at 35,000 feet on wireless internet, as well as a phone if u have a wireless option with net, and that doesnt crash the damn plane, nothing will…the odds of his cell phone being the sole purpose of the plane going down is bullshit…how many times do u see videos of people recording take off’s and landings…on phones cameras etc….i personally wouldve hit the guy right back, reguardless of his age

    • MarkSweat says:

      Luckily the kid didn’t hit back. Otherwise, he probably would have been arrested too – even if he was defending himself. One doesn’t have to look any further than the comments on this page to see the strong prejudice against teenagers in our society – the assumption that they are all lazy miscreants.

      The very fact that Santa didn’t walk away with a bloody nose shows that this kid was by far the more level headed and law-abiding citizen of this pair.

  31. Captain Walker says:

    I am NOT 68. Yet.

  32. Pax says:

    … are they sure the device was an actual iPhone? And not merely an iPod Touch? At first glance, they can look identical … and it wasn’t like the boy was making a phone call with it.

    Granted, the kid should still have turned it off – but if it was just an iPod Touch, and he had disabled the wireless networking function, then I seriously fail to see how he could have been a danger to anything or anyone. Certainly not enough to warrant getting angry, let alone, becoming violent!!

  33. Its The Beer Talking says:

    I won’t excuse the geezer’s behavior, he was wrong to hit the kid.

    However – those who argue the merits of the “turn off all electronics” rule are missing the point. When you are a guest in someone’s home/business/airplane and they make a reasonable request concerning your behavior, it’s best to comply. Why? Because that’s what people do in a polite society. It doesn’t matter if you “like” the rule or not. If I ask you to take your shoes off before entering my living room, this is not an assault on your rights as an American citizen.

    I’m sorry that you have to sit quietly for 15 minutes instead of playing Angry Birds. The horror!

    • Pax says:

      But then, the boy had ‘phones in his ears. He possibly simply didn’t hear the announcement in the first place.

      We don’t know if the guy tried to politely tell the boy what he’d missed. Since it went so far as the old man hitting the boy, I highly doubt he did. I tend to suspect he went straight to hitting, and skipped the whole “talking” part entirely.

      For all we know, the boy would have happily complied … if he had been made aware that the request had been made in the first place.

  34. Erika'sPowerMinute says:

    Yeah, I know the old fart shouldn’t have hit the kid and all that–but really, is it that huge a deal? The kid now has a funny story to tell about the time some crazy guy tried to brawl with him on a plane. Big whoop. If this is some kind of traumatic experience he needs to toughen his little ass up.

    • Pax says:

      Yes, it’s that huge a deal.

      “The kid has a funny story,” you say.

      Well, how do you know the kid wasn’t scared shitless? I mean, seriously … not every fifteen year old out there is a super-macho-manly-man who shrugs off physical violence like it was a joke. And regardless, there the kid is, locked in a tiny space, next to a man who is physically attacking him, hitting hard enough to leave marks that were still visible five to fifteen minutes later. And more, he was travelling alone, and this might have been his first time that far from home without his family.

      And even disregarding ALL the above … an adult attacked a child BECAUSE HE DIDN’T HEAR AN ANNOUNCEMENT OVER THE P.A. SYSTEM. I mean, for fuck’s sake, how is that not “a big deal” to anyone …?!

      • slamhell says:

        Its a big deal because the kid didn’t get beat enough. People are making it a big deal most likely so the kid can sue the guy or the airline. He should have gotten beat hard enough to leave scars as a memory and lesson about how not to behave in public or on an airplane.

  35. John from Huntersville says:

    I’m afraid that the old guy failed here. He should have taken the phone and smashed it

  36. lilspooky says:

    electronics have zero effects on airplanes anyway, its all BS. Fuck that old man!

    • kabamm says:

      Unfortunately, you’re wrong. Older planes with unshielded wiring can be affected by cell phone transmissions. Turn the damn thing off.

      • Chaosium says:

        “Unfortunately, you’re wrong. Older planes with unshielded wiring can be affected by cell phone transmissions. Turn the damn thing off.”

        Wouldn’t pass inspection, unless you’re taking an international flight with chickens in rickety boxes next to you. Calling bullshit on this.

      • shepd says:

        In that case you’d better only be taking off in countries with no cell towers. You realize that amount of radiation from that phone entering the plane’s electronics is similar to how much is entering the same electronics from the cell phone towers on the ground.

        Well, no, you don’t. I suppose that’s my point.

  37. baristabrawl says:

    In other news: People get what they deserve, film at 11.

  38. shepd says:

    I hope the 68-year old spends his birthday in prison. The iPhone simply isn’t going to cause any commercial plane to have any electronics trouble at all. Ask anyone with a PhD in the subject. It just won’t. Period. Vigilantes, especially vigilantes that are wrong, deserve justice. Throw the book at ‘im, please!

  39. Incident8 says:

    WOW talk about self righteous! So are any of you who think this was a good thing aware that the iPhone has an “airplane mode” which shuts off all of the cellular radios on the device? And that using such a mode makes it nothing but the equivalent of a playstation or MP3 player? Sheeple scared to the point of endorsing the beating of a teen by a curmudgeon. Really? Grow up.

    • kabamm says:

      Irrelevant – personal electronics – including playstations and MP3 players – are to be shut off during take-off and landing.

      • Chaosium says:

        “Irrelevant – personal electronics – including playstations and MP3 players – are to be shut off during take-off and landing.”

        Rule of law as an all-inclusive reasoning for any action is for simpletons.

  40. bitplayer says:

    How about the kid was waiting for the final announcement. Or perhaps the kid knows the rules are made up and arbitrary. What’s the difference between an ipod and digital wrist watch but a larger batter? Please they should throw the book at this guy.

  41. MPD01605 says:

    Was the kid charged with failure to follow a flight attendant’s instructions and attempting to bring down a commercial airliner? That old man may have saved a plane full of people from an act of terrorism…he should be a hero.

    Half sarcasm, half hating on silly teenagers. Yeah the guy overreacted, no he shouldn’t have punched a kid. Let’s all just calm down, from the kid to the man to the authorities to the people who will respond to this and tell me that violence is wrong.

  42. mcgyver210 says:

    I don’t fly anymore due to the Nazi TSA treatment but I know when I did you could use your phone if it had what is known as a Airplane Mode which disables the actual phone & leaves it Compliant for air Travel.

    Sorry two wrongs don’t make a right & if it had been a younger person Assaulting a older person the charges would be more serious. The older person needed to be treated equally for the crime committed. If it had been my kid he assaulted he would answer to me for sure not to mention my kid is a Black Belt & may have acted instinctively with a defensive counter.

  43. dirtrat says:

    NICE! Maybe the little punk learned a lesson that Mommy and Daddy didn’t teach him.

  44. Carlee says:

    I wonder – were there witnesses? In the Idaho Statesman article, the 68-yr-old says he did not hit the boy, just tapped him on the shoulder. I’d like to hear what the other passengers (particularly the ones sitting next to either party) saw/heard. Or do we assume the police took their statements already and determined that the 68-yr-old did actually hit the boy?

  45. gman863 says:

    This old fart is not an airline employee. As such, he has absolutely no authority to enforce any rules or regulations. The only thing he should have punched (tapped? touched?) was the call flight attendant button. The past several times I’ve flown I’ve seen the cabin crew stopping every few rows, getting a passenger’s attention and politely telling them they have to turn off their iWhatever device immediately.

    If this guy gets off, it will be open season for slapping duct tape on the mouths of screaming kids and using it to reshape fat people so they only occupy one seat. Granted, it’s a cool fantasy but I’d rather not have a typical flight turn into a taping of Jerry Springer.

  46. maruawe says:

    Hurray for the 68 year old . These punk kids of today won’t listen to anyone, Most are spoiled rotten. This punk endangered everyone on that flight , He should have took the device and smashed it ,then given it to the flight attendant ,I would have , If I did something like this and knew that I would be arrested for it ,I would have broke something on the punk.

    • Chaosium says:

      You sound like an insane older person. I hate young punks, old punks, and anyone rude and crazy.

      Also, nobody was endangered.

    • shepd says:

      As an octogenarian, I’m tired of you 68-year-old’s and your biros. Those things should be illegal on airplanes, the ink will explode and damage the plane. Next time I find someone with one of those on the plane such as one of you youngsters, you can expect to find it in your rear. Use a real pen next time, the kind with ink you can blot out of things.

  47. tiz says:

    i might be wrong but i thought the reason they want all your devices off is because of the wireless signals screwing with the equiptment.

    the kid probably had his iPhone on AIRPLANE MODE which eliminates that?

  48. gman863 says:

    An old fart hit a kid just because he wouldn’t turn off his iPod? Surely you can’t be serious.”

    I am serious…and stop calling me Shirley.

  49. 44Wadeable says:

    … Or maybe the kid missed the announcement because his ear buds were in and would have been more than happy to turn off his iphone. People get so angry as soon as flying is involved.

    Oh yeah, and I’ve seen plenty of adults blatantly ignore air flight attendants who ask for electronic devices to be turned off. I’ve even seen adults who hide their device when the attendant walks by and just take it out again. Nothing excuses violence, but maybe you should take issue with the adults who set examples for kids, instead of punching kids.

  50. ap0 says:

    I never turn my phone off. I’ll put it in airplane mode, but mostly just to save battery life. There are thousands of flights every day and I’m sure there’s always at least a couple cell phones on, yet none have crashed. People who blindly follow this line of bullshit are the same types who think the full-body scanners are a good thing. Get a clue: it doesn’t fucking matter.

  51. zincink says:

    Did he call the amber lamps?