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Veteran Breakdown in Miami Ends with Gate Confrontation

A veteran caught on video threatening gate staff, throwing stanchions and making anti-face mask statements at Miami International Airport was ultimately taken to a hospital for evaluation. The issue began when the flyer was denied boarding due to his erratic and violent behavior.

A veteran caught on video threatening airline staff and using abusive language at Miami International Airport (MIA) was ultimately transported to the hospital after experiencing a mental health crisis. The Miami Herald reports the unnamed veteran went on a tirade at an American Airlines gate, before police intervention ended the situation.

Flyer Reportedly Drunk and Refused Boarding, Triggering the Crisis

The incident at the gate took place on Friday, August 27, 2021, before boarding began for American Airlines Flight 38 departing Miami for London Heathrow Airport (LHR). According to witnesses, the unidentified individual may have been drunk and briefly entered the women’s restroom to allegedly confront his girlfriend. After exiting, the flyer was denied boarding his flight by gate agents over his behavior, which resulted in the confrontation shared on social media.


Miami-Dade Police were summoned to the gate, who determined the flyer was in a mental health crisis. Instead of getting arrested, he was taken by ambulance to a local hospital for evaluation. The individual will not be charged with a crime for the outburst. The Miami-Dade Police Twitter account confirmed the flyer was sent to a local hospital.


According to a statement to the newspaper from American, the flyer was placed on the carrier’s internal no-fly list, pending an investigation. It’s unclear if he will be referred to the Federal Aviation Administration as an unruly flyer.

Miami Becomes a Hotbed for Airport Violence

Although the flyer was in a mental health crisis, the outburst was the latest in a long line of disturbances at Miami International Airport. In April 2021, a fight broke out at an American gate when a party could not be accommodated on a flight. Two more incidents took place months later: A fight between two individuals at a ticketing counter in June, followed by a fight aboard an arriving aircraft spurred by racial slurs in July.

If you or someone you know are experiencing a mental health crisis, resources are available. In the U.S., call the National Suicide Prevention Hotline at (800)-273-8255 (Press 1 to reach the Veterans Crisis Line), text the Crisis Text Line by sending “HELP” to 741-741, or text the Veterans Crisis Line by sending “HELP” to 838-255. In the event of a life-threatening emergency, call 911.

Feature image courtesy prayitnophotography via Flickr (CC-BY-2.0)

mrow September 3, 2021

This guy better not be allowed to enter the UK. We do not need these types of asshole being allowed to travel.

Annerk September 1, 2021

Not everyone who has a meltdown has been drinking. In fact my guess is more of them are due to mental issues exacerbated by the overall tension in airports and on planes these days. Instead of putting people out of work and punishing those who like to start their holiday or end a long work week with an adult beverage, maybe place a limit on the amount of alcohol a person may be served, and stop offering To-Go alcohol (stupidest idea ever in airports). It seems that is a responsible compromise that will preserve jobs and allow people to have a drink, while at the same time preventing over-imbibing and drunken behavior. If I was told I could only have a glass of wine an hour, I'd be fine with it. If I was told I couldn't be served because of some knucklehead, I'd be unhappy.

DeltaFlyer123 September 1, 2021

There’s a simple solution to stopping these and similar boarding time melt downs - stop serving alcohol at airports. That’s where people get drunk, before they even board the airplanes. Of course that will never happen, it’s probably the major source airport concession income.

arcticflier August 31, 2021

This individual should have been arrested AND taken to the hospital. It is up to the Court to decide what penalties should or should not be assigned, not local PD. This guy needs serious help and assaulted atleast two people. He should not have been released without further actions and follow-up.