United Airlines finally dropped out of the headlines after dragging a passenger off a plane a few weeks ago, but now, Delta has found themselves in the middle of the fire. A family from Southern California was removed from a Delta flight a couple of weeks ago after finding out it was overbooked, and when they wouldn’t give up the seat their 2-year-old son was sitting in, they were not only threatened with jail time, but also the threat of their child being put in foster care.
According to ABC 7, the Schear family of Huntington Beach were heading to Los Angeles from Hawaii when the situation occurred. The flight they were on happened to be overbooked and they were asked to leave the plane after refusing to give up the seat occupied by their youngest son.
As the situation escalated, Brian and Brittany Schear were told by Delta empoloyees they could be sent to jail and that they could lose their children to foster care.
United: We’ll beat you.@Delta: Oh? We’ll take your kids!
— Amy Curtis (@RantyAmyCurtis) May 4, 2017
Brian Schear had purchased a ticket for his 18-year-old son Mason, but the teenager was sent home on an earlier flight. This was done so that 2-year-old Grayson could use the seat and not have to sit on his parent’s lap for the flight home that evening.
Delta Airlines stated that the flight was overbooked and since the original passenger was not using the seat, Schear must relinquish it and remove his younger son. It is at this point that another Delta employee said that the FAA states that 2-year-old children are not allowed to have their own seat on flights, but that isn’t correct at all.
According to the official website for the Federal Aviation Administration, they have nothing stating young children cannot have their own seat. They even give suggestions to parents such as using a hard-backed safety seat. As reported by Heavy, even Delta’s website states that “for kids under the age of two, we recommend you purchase a seat on the aircraft.”
Another passenger caught the entire thing on video and Brian Schear can be heard arguing his point.
“You’re saying you’re going to give that away to someone else when I paid for that seat? That’s not right.”
As the family continued their refusal to give up their seats, Brian Schear claimed that a Delta employee threatened to send him and his wife to jail and have their children put in foster care. The Daily Mail reports that the argument continued for quite a while before the Schears agreed to have Grayson sit on one of their laps.
Shortly after, the family says they were still advised to give up their seats and leave the plane due to it being overbooked and their actions. Brian Schear spoke with CBS 2 about the incident and said that he, his wife, 2-year-old Grayson, and their 1-year-old daughter were all forced to leave.
“We never thought it was going to get to the point where they were actually getting us all off the flight. As we were leaving the plane, there’s four or five passengers waiting for our seat. The bottom line is, they oversold the flight.”
According to Crave Online, the family voluntarily left the flight shortly after midnight, but they did not receive a refund for their tickets. The Schears also had to find a hotel room and pay another $2,000 for flights home the next day.
Delta Airlines did tell CBS that they were “sorry for what this family experienced.” They continued on to say that they have reached out to the Schear family to get a better understanding of what exactly transpired and how it can be fully resolved.
The Schear family finally decided to give up their seats on the Delta Airlines flight, but not until controversy had started up again and it was all caught on video.
[Featured Image by George Frey/Getty Images]