Doctor Dragged From United Plane After Computer "Solves" Overbooking Problem

Tyler Durden's picture

A man was violently dragged off of a United Airlines flight Sunday evening after it was apparently overbooked, according to passengers who were on the plane.

As The Courier Journal reports, a United spokesperson confirmed in an email Sunday night that a passenger had been taken off a flight in Chicago.

"Flight 3411 from Chicago to Louisville was overbooked," the spokesperson said. "After our team looked for volunteers, one customer refused to leave the aircraft voluntarily and law enforcement was asked to come to the gate.


"We apologize for the overbook situation. Further details on the removed customer should be directed to authorities."

Passengers were told at the gate that the flight was overbooked and United, offering $400 and a hotel stay, was looking for one volunteer to take another flight to Louisville at 3 p.m. Monday. Passengers were allowed to board the flight, Bridges said, and once the flight was filled those on the plane were told that four people needed to give up their seats to stand-by United employees that needed to be in Louisville on Monday for a flight. Passengers were told that the flight would not take off until the United crew had seats, Bridges said, and the offer was increased to $800, but no one volunteered.

Then, she said, a manager came aboard the plane and said a computer would select four people to be taken off the flight. One couple was selected first and left the airplane, she said, before the man in the video was confronted.

Bridges said the man became "very upset" and said that he was a doctor who needed to see patients at a hospital in the morning. The manager told him that security would be called if he did not leave willingly, Bridges said, and the man said he was calling his lawyer. One security official came and spoke with him, and then another security officer came when he still refused. Then, she said, a third security official came on the plane and threw the passenger against the armrest before dragging him out of the plane.

"Everyone was shocked and appalled," Bridges said. "There were several children on the flight as well that were very upset."

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Laughinggrizzley's picture

Live in Denver, and refuse to fly United. SH*TTY airline!

Pinto Currency's picture

Loss of civil society.
Wait until food shortage.

wildbad's picture

well this guy can now cash in.

$800 is chumpy change compared to what his lawyer's gonne sweat out of united.

he's one lucky dude---JACKPOT!

Luc X. Ifer's picture

Welcome to the world where computers decide the life of cattle so that their master benefit gets maximized.


hedgeless_horseman's picture


One security official came and spoke with him, and then another security officer came when he still refused. Then, she said, a third security official came on the plane and threw the passenger against the armrest before dragging him out of the plane.

Not police, but apparently United Employees

Looks like assault to me.

AVmaster's picture

Not even a criminal, but he is now... Because Windows 10 said so....

SWRichmond's picture

ZH now so cluttered with auto loading video ads and center placement ads that page loads take forever, page keeps jumping around, can't see what I'm clicking on.

bye bye, get my news elsewhere.

hedgeless_horseman's picture


Well, in fact, it does say POLICE on the security officials' jackets.

Public servants, to serve and protect fascism.

Your tax dollars at work, folks.

pemdas's picture

Here's a solution:  Why don't the four United employees rent a car and drive from Chicago to Louisville?

hedgeless_horseman's picture



Yes, apparently it will be. 


2. Disdain for the Recognition of Human Rights - Because of fear of enemies and the need for security, the people in fascist regimes are persuaded that human rights can be ignored in certain cases because of "need." The people tend to look the other way or even approve of torture, summary executions, assassinations, long incarcerations of prisoners, etc.


12. Obsession with Crime and Punishment - Under fascist regimes, the police are given almost limitless power to enforce laws. The people are often willing to overlook police abuses and even forego civil liberties in the name of patriotism. There is often a national police force with virtually unlimited power in fascist nations.

BullyBearish's picture

"The computer made me do it..."  Ted Kaczynski was on to something...

hedgeless_horseman's picture


If I am in that situation, and the thugs go hands on with me because a corporate computer told them to, I pray that I won't go limp in the hope of getting a big lawsuit payout, but rather vigorously defend my life, reputation, and liberty as best as I can, in the hope the next time one of these "civil servants" is asked to do some corporate dirty work they think twice.

Philo Beddoe's picture

I can take care of myself alright in an altercation. However, I would be alright with a ton of $ and a split lip. Sure, I could chest puff and prove that I am a MAN. But thinking that way might leave my kids without a father. 

hedgeless_horseman's picture


Even so, I'd rather my kids see video of their unarmed and innocent father scrapping it out with three thugs, rather than being hauled out like a compliant sack of shit.

Philo Beddoe's picture

Not sure I agree with you on this one, friend. There is a time to fight and a time to take one on the chin. I here you though...if I had to take a whoppin I would try not to scream like a little girl. 

hedgeless_horseman's picture


I am not a lawyer, but as soon as they grab me, I am rotating, penetrating, and damaging until either they stop the attack, or I am stopped.

However, the computer probably "knows" this about me, and would therefore not select me.  The computer is probably programmed to "randomly" select doctors, who are trained to do no harm.

PS: Your namesake would probably agree with me.

Joe Sichs Pach's picture

The good dr was hauled out like a sack of shit but it didn't look compliant to me.

hedgeless_horseman's picture didn't look compliant to me.

Obviously, you haven't seen much non-compliant.

Donald Trump's picture
Donald Trump (not verified) hedgeless_horseman Apr 10, 2017 12:42 PM

He screamed like a broad.

Then somehow he came back and ran around the plane like a crazy mumbling "I gotta go home ...I gotta go home".


Fag chink, no wonder the OS picked him.

bob_stl's picture

If they were going to pay $800 per person and a hotel stay, why didn't they just book the United employess out on another airline or a charter?

kizell's picture

No one took $800.  Makes me wonder if the announcement was made clearly to all passengers.  United Airlines no doubt showed incompetence by using a a random drawing method instead of raising the price further to avoid possible confrontation.  They ran the risk of involving the police using this method, and when you ask police to eject a paying customer, bad PR will follow.

However the poor doctor doesn't really have much a case.  All airliners over book and have limited liability when denying customers the right to fly for this reason.  Also the doctor did not object to the random drawing, showing some level of complicity in the process.  The time to object to leaving the plane would have been then, not after your name was drawn.  And finally, while it was a bad move to involve police, he was asked to exit peacefully on 2 occasions and refused.  You may be able to object leaving to United employess, but you have no right to object like that to police.  If you could do that, they wouldn't be police at all.

Lore's picture

All I know is, my own experience with United was terrible -- they treated me like shit, and the plane was a creaky old bucket of bolts -- and cops in "Amerika" are a little different than the cops I know.  United Airlines can rot -- and probably will, if there's an energy shock like the one that we're reading about. 

kizell's picture

I have no love for United Airlines even before this incident. 

There were 3 parties involved in this process.  The employees, the passenger, and the police.  The only party I have sympathy for is the police.  They were put in a completely hopeless situation that was not their fault.  If they forcibly remove the passenger, they look like nazis.  If they let the passenger have his way and they exit the plane, United Airlines will accuse them of not doing their job.

Lore's picture

I disagree.  The 'cops' behaved stupidly and made no attempt to think laterally.

kizell's picture

Think laterally?  I'm going to have to hear an example of how the police could have acted "laterally," otherwise I'm going to assume this is just useless babel.

jeff montanye's picture

i think you're right.  saw this on rt; it's not a good sign for the elite if some of their armed employees are confronting other of their armed employees, is it?

H H Henry P P P Paulson's picture

How do we know that?  Once again, we have a smartphone video conveniently starting where officers have to use force.  We never see the whole ordeal; they could have been talking to that guy for an hour trying to get him off the airplane before having to succumb to force.

I doubt he is a doctor too.

Jay's picture

United originally took the capitalist and fair way of resolving the overbooking situation. They offered money to give up their seat. When there were no takers, they offered more money. This again, was the appropriate, fair, and non-violent method of resolving the situation. They should have continued to raise the offer till there were takers. At some price, everyone will give up their seat. United just had not found the price yet. Instead, United took the facsist, unfair, violent method to kick paying customers off. Hope there's a lawsuit. I would love to sit on the jury.

kizell's picture

I agree with everything you said, as evidenced in a previous post.  But this does not put any blame on law enforcement. 

johngaltfla's picture

If they did not arrest him or read him his Miranda rights before slamming his head into an armrest, the LEOs are more guilty than that fucked up airline.

From what I've read, he has yet to be charged hence: $$$$$$$$$

Manthong's picture

I can tell you for a fact that before Continental took over United, the Customer Service Representatives had the latitude to up the offer to whatever it took to free up the seats.

I am aware of at least one occasion when it went to $1,500.00.

Keep in mind that this applied to situations where crew absolutely had to get somewhere.


Manthong's picture

United Airlines Training Video

No_More's picture

Even if you arrest and Mirandize, if you slam someone's head into an armrest, they bleed & it gets filmed, you're going to get $$$ from a jury. You might also have a federal civil rights violation claim against the LEOs if you want to go that route.

johngaltfla's picture

OH yeah. City of Chicago, which is bankrupt, is going to be writing another IOU.

Manthong's picture

One report stated that the City of Chicago has spent nearly $500 million since 2005 settling police brutality lawsuits.

In some circles these actions are referred to as “winning the negro lottery”.

JLee2027's picture

Once they allow you to board, they cannot claim they overbooked anymore. OOPS

nmewn's picture

The guy screamed like a little bitch, he deserved to get his fucking ass kicked for that alone.

Manthong's picture

Gee, seems to me like that drama makes the incident way more valuable to him.

nmewn's picture

No doubt about it, after eight years of Obama, pajamas boi's and drama queens have a lot moar value than they ever used to.

I would say over

bigkahuna's picture

united once tossed 11 people off a flight I was on - they started by offering the bucks - 6-7 people took the payoff - then they just went in inverse boarding order ( I was last so I was first kicked off)

I was like no way! They said -you go now! so I went - they rebooked me on a later flight - I went to customer service to comlain - their policy at that time was not only to rebook me on the 1st available segment - they wrote me a check for 4 times the value of the segment I was thrown off of.

I started disgruntled - but they paid me off.

nmewn's picture

Thats the way I understand most airliners policies, yeah it sucks, yes its inconvenient and I don't like it any more than anyone else BUT there's a lot of things I don't like in life and this whiney ass half a sissy is one of them. 

If he would have stood up and said "You people suck and I'll never fly your POS airline again!" OR decked one of the bastards I'd have more respect for him as a man BUT no...he whined like a little bitch and was unceremoniously treated like the lesser of a man he is and drug off. He's a fucking disgrace to manhood.

Not my problem he's a little weasel, they actually picked the right guy...just callin em like I see em ;-)  

Manthong's picture

I can state with authority that for those who deal with the larger oriental and black communities regularly, screaming and high drama comes with the territory.


Geezus, I do not think I could have stated that more diplomatically.   : - )



PrintemDano's picture

A 69 year old Chinaman wasn't able to deck anyone.

nmewn's picture

Apparently not, he just shrieked and laid down like a little bitch to be dragged off. 

He also had the option (AS I SAID) to stand up on his hind legs, tell them all what POS they were and...walk off...with his dignity still intact. He chose to forfeit it and be dragged out like a dead deer from the woods.

Fuck him.

Barney Fife's picture

Who wouldn't  want to have 5 minutes alone with you in a back alley to see just how tough  you really  are?

nmewn's picture

Motherfucker the next time you're in Alachua Fla you can bring your ass on here and tell me where you are and personally find out. 

Is that a deal bitch?

Bigly's picture

Nobody took the $800 because that is chump change to screw up personal plans and stay in that shit city. Business people who have to be somewhere literally cannot bite.

This is 100% united bullshit attitude. 

I guaranfuckingtee you that if they made it a round trip to Hawaii they would have had 4 people immediately.

If they had to put these people on the plane a good carrot works better than that literal stick. For $8000 they would have settled this.  Now?  Loss of business and brand...hard to calc...say millions.  Lawsuit from guy....millions.

Dumb fucks.  And stasi to boot.

Knob Creek's picture

I would've taken the $800 and flight voucher, rented a fucking car and probably made Louisville before the flight did....but fuck united 

risk.averse's picture

They ran the risk of involving the police using this method, and when you ask police to eject a paying customer, bad PR will follow

why were police used at all?? The jurisdiction that I live in would only have police involved if a *law* was broken or threatening to be broken. This wasn't trespass etc. Here, the cops would tell the airline to use their own staff to do the ejecting. United can now shift blame to the cops and possibly avoid a lawsuit. Dunno.

Are the cops in Chicago (good grief, Chicago!!!) so stressed-out and befuddled that they don't know whther they're coming or going? Or, is the crime wave there so horrific now that only crazies and knuckle-draggers join the force?