The lawyer who represents Doctor David Dao against United Airlines is now working for the mother involved in a American Airlines fight. Tom Demetrio made the announcement Monday on The Today Show. He took a different tone with this new case, however, and said he wasn’t sure if there’d be a lawsuit.
Viral video from Friday shows the explosive argument on an American Airlines flight out of San Francisco. Passengers say a male flight attendant hit a woman with her stroller, and almost struck her baby, too. Witnesses explained that she was from Argentina, and suggested she didn’t know what was going on.
One passenger intervened, with almost violent results.
“You do that to me, and I’ll knock you flat,” he said, half-standing from his seat, jabbing a finger at the attendant. This passenger then stood face to face with the flight attendant. The employee is seen on video apparently daring the passenger to hit him.
“The video that we just saw is a microcosm of the entire problem,” Demetrio told Today. “We’ve got a flight attendant out of control. We’ve got a distressed mother. We’ve got a passenger trying to protect that mother.” He was more complimentary of another American Airlines employee, however. “But in the background, we see the pilot, and the pilot is concerned. When we get on an airplane, we sort of want our pilot to be calm, cool, collected as he takes off, or she takes off, into the skies.”
The airline quickly apologized for the incident, and suspended the flight attendant. They tried to make peace with the mother by moving her to first class and giving her a $1000 voucher.
But while Demetrio wasn’t sure about a lawsuit against American, he said that he and Dao will definitely take United to court. The doctor reportedly suffered a concussion, lost teeth, and a broken nose. On Today, the lawyer accused airline CEO Oscar Munoz of being slow to publicly say sorry, and at this point, a face-to-face apology would be too little, too late. United initially claimed that Dao was being belligerent, an allegation Demetrio denies.
[Screengrab via NBC]