Virginia man attacks flight attendants, tries to escape mid-flight

Virginia man attacks flight attendants, tries to escape mid-flight

It’s no secret that flying can often be a stressful experience. But one passenger on an airplane bound for Florida took this to the extreme.

The New York Post reports that Joseph Sharkey, 36 of Reston, Virginia, has been arrested and now faces a federal charge of assault or intimidation of a flight crew, which according to a statement by U.S. Attorney A. Lee Bentley III, is punishable by up to 20 years in prison.

Sharkey was on a Jet Blue flight from Washington, D.C., to Jacksonville, Florida on Sunday when he put a fellow passenger into a headlock, said Bentley. When a flight attendant ordered him back to his seat, he proceeded to assault the flight attendant and then tried to escape the plane mid-flight through an exit door. Sharkey then kneed another flight attendant in the groin before being subdued and put into flexicuffs by flights attendants and volunteers on the plane.

The plane landed safely in Jacksonville where Sharkey was escorted off the aircraft by local police. He remained in police custody on Monday.