Delta First Class Passenger Kissed Flight Attendant, Broke Pilot’s Meal Tray After Being Denied A Cocktail

A couple of weeks ago an American Airlines first class passenger was dragged off of a flight by police after he insisted on a predeparture beverage.

A Delta Air Lines first class passenger took a different approach to being denied their pre-takeoff cocktail.

He was flying Delta 517 from Minneapolis to Anchorage earlier this month and asked a flight attendant for red wine – but the crewmember wasn’t doing a predeparture beverage service. The flight attendant said the passenger remained snippy during the flight, asking later for his “predeparture drink.” That’s when things got weird.

  • He had his red wine while inflight, and his meal. When the flight attendant went to collect his tray, the passenger offered a handshake instead.

  • Then the man went to use the lavatory but stopped at the galley and told the male crewmember that he was “so beautiful.” He asked for a kiss. When told no, the passenger kissed the man’s neck and then gave him an employee recognition card.

  • The first class flight attendant bailed for the back of the aircraft, but things descended further because the passenger broke the tray with the captain’s meal while in the forward galley.

The man eventually had 3 glasses of wine and fell asleep. He was detained on arrival in Anchorage and told FBI and local law enforcement that he drank only a single glass of wine, never went to the restroom on the flight, and “never kissed anybody.” He didn’t exactly deny breaking the pilot’s meal tray, instead responding by denying that he had eaten anything himself. His other excuse? ‘I don’t remember.’

He also admitted to consuming “a lot” of alcohol prior to boarding the flight, though he refused to take a breathalyzer test. He also wondered if he was being arrested for the reason he was traveling to Alaska and declared, “Do you guys know who I am?”

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. Is it really a surprise that these incidents occur? All of the airlines heavily promote alcohol and flying. Just yesterday, Delta was tweeting booze. I like a good stiff drink as much as the next guy, but I do think the airlines need to reduce the alcohol promotion. They’re enabling people who have a problem.

  2. When flying with Delta Airlines to Alaska, a first-class passenger kissed a flight attendant and broke the pilot’s meal tray after being denied a cocktail. “He asked for a kiss. When told no, the passenger kissed the man’s neck and then gave him an employee recognition card.” I never knew Delta pilots receive a special meal tray. What is the difference between a first-class passenger meal and a pilot meal?

    The International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) level of threat specifics are as follows: Level 1 — Disruptive behavior (verbal); Level 2 — Physically abusive behavior; Level 3 — Life-threatening behavior (or display of a weapon). Since you can get other STDs from oral sex (in an aircraft galley), Delta Airlines might argue this escalated to a level 3 threat because of life-threatening behavior.

    Safety first. The CDC states, “You can get other STDs from oral sex. If you get feces in your mouth during anilingus, you can get hepatitis A and hepatitis B, parasites like Giardia, and bacteria like Shigella, Salmonella, Campylobacter, and E. coli.”

  3. First off… it’s Delta Air Lines. If you’re gonna use brand names…get it right. Secondly, pilots do not always get the same as a “first class meal”. It all depends on what is left after passenger service. The cabin crew tries to ascertain if a person is intoxicated but that can sometimes be difficult as there are no certified devices nor trained people to use them aboard. Any forced touching is technically battery…lock ’em up. Interference with the flight crew/aircraft operation, etc., if found guilty…ban ’em.

  4. When I fly I don’t want trouble from other obnoxious Passengers
    Just allow me to reach my destination In peace or else I will side with the attendants and kick your ass…and I’m an old woman.

    Pieces of shit like u unruly assholes don’t frighten me. If it takes kicking u off the plane,then so be it.

    Get over yourselves and don’t fly…!!!!!

  5. I’ll never refuse an upgrade, but this is why I never pay for domestic F. Equal chance of dealing with someone unpleasant in front as in back

  6. “What is the difference between a first-class passenger meal and a pilot meal?“

    The pilots always get stuck with the pasta.

  7. @Win Whitmire: I agree. The correct name is Delta Air Lines. Regarding, “pilots do not always get the same as a “first class meal.” It all depends on what is left after passenger service.” When flying on Delta Air Lines, I will feel bad, depriving my pilot of the opportunity of eating my leftovers whenever I receive a tasty first-class meal. I also agree that Delta Air Lines should ban this passenger for interference with the flight crew.

  8. Ken A – I don’t know that anybody anywhere in the history of humanity has gotten an STD from a kiss on the neck. This passenger acted appallingly and deserved to be arrested and banned from future flights, but there’s no reason to just make up risks from what he did. What he did alone is reason enough.

  9. Pilot meals on DL are, by contract, the same as FC, they DO NOT get leftovers. That said, if there is no crew meal boarded because of duration, the pilots MAY be offered meals that might not have been served. The same goes for Flight Attendants.

  10. “You can get other STDs from oral sex. If you get feces in your mouth during anilingus, you can get hepatitis A and hepatitis B, parasites like Giardia, and bacteria like Shigella, Salmonella, Campylobacter, and E. coli.”

    It is highly doubtful anyone ever has gotten any of these diseases from a kiss on the neck. (We allow children to be kissed on the neck – suggesting nobody in our society considers this to be “oral sex.”

    What the passenger did was already appalling, worthy of being arrested and banned from flying. There’s no need to make it out to be any more lurid or risky by throwing sexually transmitted diseases in there.

  11. @Dave: Responding to the question, Can You Get an STD From Kissing?
    According to Johns Hopkins, All Children’s Hospital, Health Information Library, “Yes, you can catch herpes just from kissing someone on the mouth. And while experts believe the risk of catching HIV (the virus that causes AIDS) from kissing is low, someone who has a cut or sore in the mouth has a chance of infection during open-mouthed kissing.” Accordingly, if the flight attendant has a cut or sore on their neck, an infected person can transmit the infection to a flight attendant. Reference:

    Another article from Singapore discusses the transmissibility of STDs like Syphilis, Herpes, HPV, and Cytomegalovirus that are spread through kissing. Read more:

    An example of “bacteria that can be transmitted during kissing include:
    Meningococcal disease – this is a potentially life-threatening condition which includes meningitis, inflammation of the membranes (meninges) that surround the brain and spinal cord, and septicaemia.”

    Although “we allow children to be kissed on the neck,” from an infection control standpoint, it should not be acceptable for passengers to kiss their flight attendant on their neck.

  12. Ken A. needs to stay off the Internet. Lol.
    While health organizations have to give the theoretical risk of kissing (I guess that’s oral sex? Ask Bill Clinton), the risk is considered extremely low for most diseases, and regarding HIV, only one extraordinary single documented case from kissing, from two infected partners with open sores in their mouths. It cannot be transmitted through saliva.
    This thread is really taken a turn. Thanks Ken A.

    Kissing someone uninvited is still battery, and when it’s cabin crew, it’s a federal crime. I believe most of these cases are dropped, or plead down with a little fine. Even if a passenger is banned, they can just go to the next airline. We need real accountability for people who act horrible on planes and cause delays that cost thousands of dollars. And an interline ban for the worst offenders. I don’t think the airlines want to be seen as going after their own clientele, but why should they be on the hook for compensating passengers for that handsy fella who can’t hold their liquor in 10C?
    Same thing for those bananas who keep “forgetting” about their loaded gun in their bags in security.

  13. Regarding Pilot meals…

    It’s the same tray… Not sure why they wrote it that way.
    What they get to eat depends on the Purser or Lead Flight Attendant.
    Officially, they manifest crew meals after the passengers.
    (sometimes, based on duty day, crew meals are catered and thrown in with passenger meals which are much the same)
    Some leads will give the flight deck and cabin crew first pick of their options, then manifest passengers after pre-selected meals have been accounted for.
    On a Transoceanic flight, there’s so much left over food, but the crew isn’t exactly poaching D1, just what is uneaten by passengers (especially the dessert cart).

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