CHICAGO — A man claiming to be a doctor was forcibly dragged off a United Airlines flight from Chicago to Louisville on Sunday night after he refused to give up his seat on an overbooked flight, according to the Louisville Courier-Journal.
The video shows the man screaming as he is dragged off the plane by uniformed personnel.
United officials told passengers the plane would not take off until four of its employees, who needed to be in Louisville on Monday morning to service a flight, were seated.
Audra Bridges told the Louisville Courier-Journal that the flight was overbooked and passengers were offered $400 and a free hotel room in exchange for their seat. When no passengers took the offer, the airline doubled the offer to $800.
When no passengers took the $800 offer, the computer randomly selected four passengers to be removed from the flight and placed on a Monday morning flight.
Two passengers gave up their seat without incident before the man, who is shown in the video, was confronted by security.
The man said he needed to be in Louisville on Monday to meet with his patients. He later called his lawyer before a security officer confronted him.
When the man refused to get off the plane, two more security officers arrived, pulled him out of his seat as he was screaming, and dragged him out of the plane.
The Courier-Journal reported the man later returned to the plane and received medical attention for a bloody face. The flight was delayed for about two hours.
“Everyone was shocked and appalled,” Bridges said. “There were several children on the flight as well that were very upset.”
United issued a statement:
“Flight 3411 from Chicago to Louisville was overbooked After our team looked for volunteers, one customer refused to leave the aircraft voluntarily and law enforcement was asked to come to the gate. We apologize for the overbook situation.”
Another statement was released later, by the CEO: