An employee of Walt Disney World was allegedly punched in the face by an angry Chicago tourist after being told that she (the guest) couldn’t use the Tower of Terror FastPass line without a valid FastPass, Orlando’s WKMG-TV reports.
On July 13, at about 9 p.m., the 23-year-old woman was traveling with a group when she tried to use the FastPass line to ride the Tower of Terror, one of the Disney’s Hollywood Studios theme park’s most popular attractions. For those not familiar, the FastPass system allows guests to bypass the regular line on certain popular attractions at certain times.
Unfortunately for the Chicago woman, identified by The Miami Herald as Jessica Grines, she didn’t have a valid FastPass, for reasons not made clear. She might not have had a FastPass at all or might have had a FastPass for a different ride or a different time. Regardless, Grines allegedly became “verbally aggressive” with the cast member (what the Disney company calls its employees), identified as 23-year-old Taylor Gragert.
Gragert attempted to use the telephone at her podium to call for backup, which enraged Grines even further. Grines allegedly began attempting to push random buttons on the control panel, which could have affected the ride, so Gragert pushed Grines’ hand away. Grines allegedly punched Gragert in response. Fortunately, Grines’ button-pushing didn’t have any effect on the ride.
On this day in 1994, the Twilight Zone Tower of Terror opened in the Disney-MGM Studios! pic.twitter.com/3dMk7qt5hW
— The Mickey Wiki (@TheMickeyWiki) July 22, 2019
While Gragert was on the phone with security, Gragert and her group ran off, but they were quickly rounded up by security personnel and escorted from the park. They have been “trespassed” from Walt Disney World and other Disney parks, essentially meaning that they’re banned for life.
“We don’t tolerate unsafe behavior,” said a Disney spokesperson.
As for Gragert, she suffered minor swelling in her eye from the incident. She refused medical treatment and declined to press charges.
Guest misbehavior at Disney theme parks is rare, but not unheard of. After all, it can be hot, crowded, and at times, frustrating being a guest in the Happiest Place on Earth, and sometimes tensions boil over. Sometimes guests have a few too many as well. Fortunately, security is usually on the spot pretty quickly to intervene before things get out of hand.
That’s not to say that things don’t sometimes get out of hand, however. For example, as previously reported by The Inquisitr, last week a violent brawl between two families took place at Disneyland. The enraged guests traded punches and kicks for several minutes before security was able to get things under control.