Virgin America: Man’s Suicide Note Vowed To ‘Take You All With Me’ By Destroying Jet
Virgin America passengers had quite the scare while preparing for takeoff from the San Francisco Airport. Virgin customer Vicki Riffe noticed a fellow passenger writing frantically on a piece of paper as the airplane taxied towards the runway. As she peered over to read the writings, she was horrified. The man wrote that he was going to commit suicide by destroying the jet in order to “take you all with me.”
The frightened woman informed a flight attendant of the disturbing letter, and the plane was immediately returned to the terminal. However, many are praising not only Vicki for notifying crew of the man’s bizarre behavior, but also the pilot for the way he handled the turnaround without tipping off the disturbed passenger that the crew knew of his sinister threats.
The New York Daily News reports that passenger Vicki Riffe was on a Virgin America flight from San Francisco to Austin, Texas, when she noticed an angry man furiously writing a note. Vicki, who was sitting in the middle seat, peered over at the page to see what the man was writing and made a horrifying discovery. The paper contained a suicide note with scribbles that indicated the man intended to destroy the jet and kill everyone on board.
“He started writing extremely fast — with anger. I was scared to death. I started thinking about my kids.”
After reading the disturbed man’s note, Vicki informed the man in the aisle seat to get a member of the flight crew. She told a flight attendant about the letter and the pilot was informed of the threat. Instead of making a scene, the pilot simply stated that the plane was experiencing some minor mechanical issues and needed to turn back momentarily. Upon arriving at the gate, police entered the plane and escorted the man from his seat.
According to the Daily Mail, a bomb-sniffing dog then entered the plane to check for any signs of explosives. After the plane was cleared, passengers were given the opportunity to exit the plane and take another flight or continue on as planned. It was noted that approximately one dozen people chose to exit the flight.
Another passenger on the flight, Eric Berg, praised Riffe for turning in the suspicious behavior. However, he also says that the captain handled the situation “amazingly well.”
“The woman who called the man out was amazing. And the captain of the plane, someone needs to give that guy some props. He handled it amazingly well.”
Virgin America notes that the passenger who was removed from the flight was screened before entering the plane and was unarmed.
[Image Credit: Getty Images/ Justin Sullivan]