Couple Sues Alaska Airlines After Alleged Bathroom Altercation Gets Them A Police Escort From Plane

Consumers generally fly first class for the perks: more leg room, bigger seats, a restroom shared with fewer people and being escorted off the plane into police custody. Wait, that last one doesn’t sound right, yet a couple flying from Las Vegas to Portland received just that after an alleged squabble with an Alaska Airline flight attendant over the use of the first class restroom. Now, the couple is suing the airline for humiliation, among other things.

The couple is seeking $11,498 from the airline, claiming the flight attendant injured the woman and was acting purely out of spite when she had the couple taken into police custody, The Oregonian reports.

According to the lawsuit, the ordeal began when the couple was flying first class from Las Vegas home to Portland on February 16.

The woman needed to use the restroom, but passengers from coach kept walking up to use the one in first class. While the woman waited her turn, she asked the flight attendant if she would make an announcement stating that passengers were only to use the restrooms in their assigned cabins – a fairly typical rule on flights.

The plaintiff claims the attendant refused the request and became “snippy.” When the woman was finally able to use the bathroom, the flight attendant slammed the door shut, allegedly injuring the woman’s shoulder, The Oregonian reports.

The couple asked for the flight attendant’s name to file a complaint. Instead they received a form stating the couple had created an in-flight disturbance by verbally assaulting the employee and would be escorted from the plane.

Upon landing passengers were asked to remain seated while Port of Portland police boarded the flight to remove the couple.

Police released the couple after about 30 minutes of questioning, and determined there was no criminal wrongdoing.

According to the suit, the woman suffered a rotator cuff injury and impingement syndrome, which required about two months of physical therapy.

In all, the couple is suing the airline for $1,498 in medical expenses, $7,000 for non-economic damages for pain, suffering and inconvenience, and $3,000 for humiliation suffered from being taken into custody.

A spokesperson for the airline declined comment to the Oregonian regarding the case.

Alaska Airlines restroom-use squabble leads to wrongful detainment, $11,500 lawsuit claims [The Oregonian]