According to an American Airlines statement, an American Eagle flight landing at New York City's LaGuardia Airport on Saturday afternoon was deplaned on the tarmac owing to a potential security issue.
According to a statement from the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, the flight, operated as American Airlines flight 4817, was evacuated "in response to reports by passengers of suspicious and erratic behavior by a fellow passenger,"
"Law enforcement and first responders met the aircraft and the passenger involved in the incident has been taken into custody," Republic Airways said.
According to a statement from the airline, the plane declared an emergency on Saturday "in response to passenger behavior near the end of the flight,"
Passengers told Port Authority Police that a passenger groped for his bags during the flight, and they were afraid, according to Port Authority spokeswoman Thomas Topousis.
The flight carried 76 passengers and six staff members, according to Topousis.
Officials are "monitoring the situation, and there is no reason to believe there is any danger to New Yorkers at this time." said New York Governor Kathy Hochul in a tweet.
According to a Saturday evening tweet from the airport's official Twitter account, operations were unaffected by the incident.
The post stated, "The earlier incident involving a disruptive American Airlines/Republic Airways passenger and an evacuation of passengers has been resolved,"
According to an earlier Port Authority statement, the pilot informed officials on the ground of the situation, and after the plane landed on a runway, a "runway exit from the airplane was performed to clear passengers from the airliner,"
Investigators spoke with the passenger who was acting suspiciously and many other passengers sitting near that person to learn more about what happened on the aircraft, according to the Port Authority.
The New York City Fire Department was called in by the Port Authority Police Department to assist with an emergency landing, according to the FDNY.
"the pilots and flight attendants started yelling 'Evacuate! Evacuate!' and we all got off the plane." said Indianapolis resident Laura Bergdoll, who was aboard the flight with her 7-year-old son.
"someone was acting suspiciously and made some type of bomb threat." Bergdoll claimed.
According to the company, the flight was an American Eagle flight 4817 operated by Republic Airways, which took off from Indianapolis and arrived at LaGuardia.
The Federal Aviation Administration is aware of the occurrence, classifying it as a security issue that resulted in all passengers safely deplaning.
According to a statement from Transportation Security Administration spokesperson Sari Koshetz, Saturday's incident "was an example of a 'See Something, Say Something' situation."
Passengers reported strange conduct on the plane to the flight crew, who subsequently informed the captain, who "took the precaution of parking away from the terminal," according to Koshetz.
The incident was cleared by the New York Port Authority Police, an Explosive Ordnance Disposal squad, and a K9 team, according to Koshetz.