Los Angeles – He tried to force the locked cockpit door open and open while the flight attendant prayed to the pilots.
A passenger who tried to break into a plane’s cockpit last week was recently under the influence of methamphetamine before jumping from the moving plane in Los Angeles, authorities said Monday.
Luis Antonio Victoria Dominguez of La Paz, Mexico, broke his leg on Friday when he opened the plane’s emergency exit and jumped onto the tarmac at Los Angeles International Airport, according to the office of the US attorney in Los Angeles.
He underwent surgery and is expected to appear in federal court this week for flight crew interference, which could lead to 20 years in prison if convicted.
It was not immediately clear if he had a lawyer who could speak on his behalf.
A criminal complaint published on Monday gave new details about the incident and the life of Victoria Dominguez in the previous days.
The 33-year-old arrived in Los Angeles from Cabo San Lucas, Mexico on Tuesday, according to the complaint. His plan was to get to Salt Lake City, but he didn’t have a connecting flight. He spent the night in a downtown Los Angeles hotel after drinking several beers and buying “a lot” of crystal meth for $ 20, he told the FBI.
The next day, he continued to smoke crystal meth and decided to fly to Utah instead of taking a bus, according to the complaint. He smoked more drugs before heading to the airport on Thursday, but eventually missed his flight and wandered the streets all night.
He missed a second flight on Friday but was postponed aboard United Airlines flight 5365, operated by SkyWest Airlines, to Salt Lake City. Victoria Dominguez took his seat and began to doze off as he “came down from all the drugs he had consumed in recent days,” the complaint said.
The passenger sitting next to Victoria Dominguez told authorities he continued to look around and fidget. He asked her where she was going, and she said it was none of her business. She said he then whispered to her that he had to get off the plane and was going to jump. “I’m serious,” he said.
Victoria Dominguez, however, told the FBI she overheard other passengers laughing and saying they were going to a different destination, according to the complaint. He panicked. He “sprinted” towards a flight attendant at the front of the plane around 7:00 pm and said he was not feeling well and had to get off the flight.
The flight attendant said the plane was about to take off and they began to struggle, according to the complaint. He knocked on the locked cockpit door and tried to open it as the flight attendant prayed that the pilots – who were confused by the beating – would not open the door, according to the document.
Victoria Dominguez opened the emergency exit door and the emergency slide deployed, according to the complaint, as the flight attendant called on the pilots to stop the plane.
He told the FBI that his panic attack “potentially gave him the strength to open the door.” The plane, which had not moved before, began to taxi as Victoria Dominguez struggled with a passenger trying to hold it back.
Victoria Dominguez fled and jumped off the plane, missing the emergency slide and landing on the tarmac, breaking her right leg. He was trying to get away from the plane when he was apprehended.