Christopher Williams is the Delta flight attendant who is making headlines after restraining and zip-tying a man who was repeatedly knocking on the door of the cockpit during a flight. The video went viral, and Twitter users have since said they have newfound respect for flight attendants. Some passengers described the man on Twitter as an attempted hijacker.
The FBI is conducting an investigation into the incident, Albuquerque airport spokeswoman Stephanie Kitts told USA Today.
The flight, Delta Flight 386, left Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) Friday, June 4, 2021, and was on its way to Nashville, Tennessee, when the man attempted to enter the cockpit, Kitts told the outlet.
Several videos were recorded of the incident, which shows flight attendants and passengers tackling the man, wrestling with him and restraining him. You can watch those videos below.
Here’s what you need to know:
Delta Flight 386 Was Diverted & Made an Emergency Landing in Albuquerque, New Mexico, & Delta Thanked the Crew & Passengers
The Delta flight made an emergency landing in Albuquerque, New Mexico, where the man was taken into custody, CBS LA reported. Authorities did not release the name of the man or further details on the incident. In a statement provided to CBS LA, Delta described the man as “an unruly passenger” and thanked the crew and passengers for their response in detaining the man.
FBI Albuquerque posted a brief statement on Twitter, saying there was no threat to the public.
“The #FBI is responding to a report of a diverted flight at @ABQSunport. There is no threat to the public at this time,” the statement said.
One person shared the video on Twitter, saying the man “tried to hijack my plane on God we just had to emergency land.”
In one of the videos, Williams explained to another passenger on the plane why the man was being detained.
“He kept banging on the flight door,” the flight attendant said on the video. “That’s a no-no. The second he banged on the door, it was a wrap.”
Delta gave a statement to CBS LA, which said, in part:
Thanks to the crew and passengers of Delta Flight 386, LAX to Nashville (BNA), who assisted in detaining an unruly passenger as the flight diverted to Albuquerque (ABQ). The aircraft landed without incident and the passenger was removed by law enforcement.
A Passenger Shared Her Account & Videos of the ‘Terrifying’ Incident From the Third Row of the Delta Flight
Jessica Robertson, the chief content officer of TOGETHXR, shared her account of the incident and videos from the third row of the plane.
“I was on this flight in the 3rd row – witness to everything. Terrifying but our @Delta flight attendant Christopher Williams acted quickly. So did several passengers around me. Safe but still in Albuquerque. Hope @delta gives Chris every bit of recognition and bonus he deserves,” Robertson wrote on Twitter.
“This was our view from the 3rd row right after the @Delta attendants and passengers apprehended the person who attempted to get into the cockpit. He was screaming ‘Stop the plane,'” she wrote in another post, sharing a video of the incident.
Passengers & Twitter Users Call on Delta to Reward ‘Hero’ Williams for His Actions
Passengers on the diverted Delta flight and other Twitter users commended Williams for his actions and called on Delta to reward him. One Twitter user shared a photo of Williams after the incident, sitting in a chair with his head lowered onto his clasped hands.
“@Delta this man needs an award.. just saved the plane. LA flight to Nashville..” the post said.
“Props and respect to the @Delta flight attendant Christopher Williams who stopped an attempted hijacking of a plane. He apprehended and hog tied the deranged passenger attempting to breach the cockpit. Delta please give this man an award, promotion, and bonus,” another person wrote.
A passenger wrote, “Flight attendants, I respect y’all,” in another of the videos that shows Williams restraining the man.
Videos showed several crew members and passengers working together to eliminate the potential threat and detain the man. Williams directs the group and acts calmly throughout the video. He zip-tied the man, who was repeatedly calling for pilots to “stop the plane.”
Williams explained to a passenger during the video that they were restraining the man because he was knocking on the door of the cockpit. After passengers and crew restrained the man’s hands and feet with zip-ties, they moved the man to the back of the plane, as far away from the cockpit as possible, and made an emergency landing in Albuquerque.
“True hero in the skies,” another person wrote on Twitter. “Christopher Williams, a flight attendant for Delta, stops a passenger from entering the cockpit. FAs are there to protect the passengers and plane, not just to serve drinks!”