Grandmother Says She Was Kicked Off Flight for Asking Flight Attendant to Remove Trash
"I don't do garbage," the flight attendant allegedly told Ellen Flemming before she was labeled a threat.
An Air Canada flight was turned around mid-flight after a flight attendant labeled her a threat following a confrontation over garbage.
Ellen Flemming, 71, was traveling with her husband and two grandchildren when she said she made a simple request that quickly escalated.
Flemming told Inside Edition she noticed wet trash in the seat pocket in front of her, so she called over a flight attendant to clear it out. But to her surprise, he immediately became angry and refused to do so.
"He hauled himself up to his full height and said, 'I'm a flight attendant and I don't look after garbage,'" Flemming said.
Stunned, Flemming said that she then tried to put the garbage on a food cart a few minutes later.
"He swiped my arm away and the garbage flew all over us," she said. "With my foot, I scraped it off, away from my feet."
Soon after, the pilot announced the plane, which was on its way to New Brunswick, was returning to British Columbia due to an incident.
When they landed, Flemming said she was escorted off the plane by police.
Passenger Helen Hollett said she witnessed the encounter and at no point did Flemming seem like a threat. "The thing is most of the passengers on that plane didn't even know what was happening," Hollett said.
But the airline claims otherwise. In a letter addressed to Flemming from Air Canada, the airline said she “exhibited aggressive behavior toward a crewmember; threw garbage on the food trolley; kicked a crewmember when requested to wait until the member could come back and pick up the garbage as he was serving food."
Flemming vehemently denies the allegations, and even shared images with Inside Edition of bruises she said she sustained in the encounter with the flight attendant.
"It's not right," she said. "It's not right for Air Canada to do this to anyone."
Police investigated but determined no criminal offenses had taken place.
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