A white woman who was shown on video harassing and attacking at least one passenger during a recent commercial airplane flight is reportedly being investigated by federal law enforcement officials. Patricia Cornwall was taken into custody last week after the plane landed in Atlanta in what is seemingly the latest example of a so-called “Karen” being brought to justice for flagrantly flouting the law.
The fateful Delta Air Lines flight was one of the rare instances of a white woman trying to weaponize her privileges against a fellow white person. But still, the episode ended like most of the other viral Karen videos — with her being held accountable for her actions, albeit much more swiftly than those instances involving Black victims, but we digress…
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The video footage that was apparently recorded by another passenger opens by showing a furious Cornwall standing over and berating a seemingly elderly white man about the universal airline policy of everybody on board being required to wear masks during the COVID-19 pandemic. Only this woman wasn’t wearing one at all.
“Put your f**king mask on!” Cornwall implored, to which the man responded: “I’m eating!”
Passengers are permitted to lower their masks while eating or drinking on flights.
Still, Cornwall fired back, “Don’t you dare talk to me like that!”
After Cornwall dares the man to stand up, almost as if she wanted to fight him, he yelled in no uncertain terms, “Sit down, Karen!” — three words that elicited applause from some of the other passengers who couldn’t help but hear the commotion.
Cornwall and the unidentified man go on to exchange expletives as a flight attendant appears to restrain the “Karen” and tells her to put her “mask up, right now.”
Karen responds by telling the flight attendant to tell the man to put his mask up.
After the man calls Cornwall a “witch” with a capital B, the video shows she smacked his face.
“Now you’re going to jail!” the man said while wagging his finger at Cornwall.
Watch the video below.
As it turns out, the man was correct about Cornwall’s fate, sort of.
Atlanta news outlet 11 Alive reported that the “unruly passenger” was taken into custody once the flight from Tampa arrived at Hartsfield–Jackson Atlanta International Airport on Thursday.
A former Atlanta prosecutor told 11 Alive that Cornwall might be facing some seriously harsh penalties for her in-flight violence.
“She could be charged with a felony by interfering with the lawful duties of not one, but two, I think maybe three flight attendants because they had to restrain her and continually ask her to stop,” Darryl Cohen said. “She is potentially facing both misdemeanor and felony charges.”
As of Sunday, Cornwall had reportedly still not been charged with a crime.
Unruly passengers have been an issue that’s been steadily escalating as the pandemic endures. Airline crews recently released a list of demands in response, including a mandatory “no-fly list” for anybody found to be in violation. Airline industry officials testified earlier this month at a Senate Commerce Committee hearing on the impact of federal support for airlines during the COVID pandemic.
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