This story will make you think twice before falling asleep on an airplane. A 22-year-old woman was traveling on a Spirit Airlines flight from Las Vegas to Detroit on January 3 when she fell asleep at her window seat. She woke up at some point during the trip after feeling 34-year-old Prabhu Ramamoorthy’s hand down her pants.
According to a criminal complaint filed against the aggressor, published by Buzzfeed News, ” she woke up to a hand in her pants and noticed that her pants and shirt were unbuttoned.”
“She stated that the man next to her was shoving his fingers in her vagina and vigorously moving them.”
As soon as the victim realized what was going on, she immediately reported the incident to the flight attendant. Ramamoorthy, who was sitting between the victim and his wife on the aircraft, initially claimed that he had been “in deep sleep.” But afterward, he admitted to the authorities that he cupped her breasts over her clothes and “might have” undone the victim’s bra “while playing with it.”
According to The Detroit News, Ramamoorthy also tried to digitally penetrate her after unzipping her pants, but “failed.”
Ramamoorthy was arrested as soon as the plane landed in Detroit, and is being held without bond as he is considered a flight risk. The assailant is on a work visa as he is an Indian citizen working for a technology company in Michigan.
At a private hearing yesterday, U.S. Executive Magistrate Judge R. Steven Whalen mentioned the incident was “odd” as Ramamoorthy’s wife was sitting right next to him. Whalen encouraged Ramamoorthy to appeal the detention order.
The allegations against Ramamoorthy were surprising to those who know him. He has worked for the past two years as a project manager without incident. “I have a hard time with some of these allegations but that’s what a trial is for,” said Richard O’Neill, Ramamoorthy’s lawyer.
“There have been no allegations from anywhere that his behavior has ever been inappropriate prior to this incident.”
A spokesperson for Spirit Airlines released a statement saying that they are fully cooperating with the authorities.