Photography Is Not A Crime of the Day: Commercial photographer Sandy DeWitt was recently escorted off a Miami-bound US Airways flight for taking the photo of a rude employee’s nametag for use in a future complaint.
The employee, Tonialla G., reportedly chased DeWitt aboard the plane, and confronted her after the latter was already in her seat. DeWitt told Ms. G. that the photo was unusable, having turned out too dark, and attempted to further placate her by displaying the offending photo and deleting it on the spot.
This was apparently not enough for the irate boarding area agent, who barged into the cockpit and demanded DeWitt be branded a “security risk.” Her wish was granted, and DeWitt was promptly removed from the plane by two flight attendant as passengers looked on. “I announced to the other passengers that I was being removed because I took a photo,” DeWitt is quoted as saying. “I announced that photography is not a crime.”
Back at the Philadelphia International Airport terminal, DeWitt was informed by US Airways manager Michael Lofton that she would not be allowed to replane, as she was considered a security risk. Adding insult to injurious labels, the American Airlines flight she was directed to had already departed, and no additional Miami flights were scheduled for that day.
Luckily, Southwest Airlines managed to get DeWitt and her husband seated on a flight to Fort Lauderdale, but the detour forced the couple to phone a friend at 1:15 AM for a ride back to their car, parked at Miami International Airport — a 45 minute drive.
US Airways, meanwhile, is sticking by its employee. Spokesman Todd Lehmacher told MSNBC that “once onboard, [DeWitt] was using foul and explicit language” and was removed “at the request of the captain” for being “disruptive.” Lehmacher said he wasn’t able to confirm if Ms. G. told the captain that DeWitt was a security threat, nor was he able to say what exactly DeWitt was to have said that caused her to be removed.
Fuck you Tonialla G! Toe-Nail-ya!