Pilot lands plane early after woman became so homophobic he feared passengers were in danger
A Jet2 flight from the Canary Islands to Manchester had to be diverted after a woman became so drunk and homophobic that the pilot feared passengers were in danger.
Cork District Court heard Monday (28 December) that Campbell, following an argument with her partner, had become extremely abusive towards the cabin crew, calling one attendant a “faggot” repeatedly.
She was moved to a different seat by the crew, but her homophobic rant continued in such an abusive manner that the pilot felt it was not safe to continue to Manchester.
The flight was diverted for the safety of everyone on board, and Garda Gearoid Whelton arrested Campbell at Cork Airport.
She was charged with being so intoxicated that she gave rise to fears that she might endanger herself or other persons on board the flight, contrary to Section 2A (1) and Section 2A (4) of the Air Navigation and Transport Act 1973, and with engaging in threatening, abusive or insulting behaviour with intent to cause or being reckless to cause a breach of the peace, contrary to Section 2A (3) and Section 2A (4) of Air Navigation band Transport Act 1973.
Defending Campbell, barrister Emmet Boyle said that his client was remorseful and embarrassed and that she pleaded guilty to the charges.
Boyle said she had started drinking at her hotel in Fuertaventura, before consuming more alcohol at the airport. Flight crew found an empty vodka bottle by her seat on the plane.
He insisted that the homophobic rant was out of character for Campbell and that it had only happened because she was so intoxicated on the flight.
Judge Colm Roberts said Campbell hurling abuse and “homophobic slurs” at cabin crew was “egregious behaviour”, and added that she had caused disruption to the more than 100 other passengers.
She was fined €500 for her first offence and €1,000 for her second offence.