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FAA may investigate Alec Baldwin incident if complaint filed

December 6, 2011

Alec Baldwin’s dispute with an American Airlines flight attendant does not appear to be a criminal matter, law enforcement sources said Tuesday.

Baldwin was kicked off a flight departing from LAX on Tuesday afternoon — apparently because he was playing “Words with Friends” on an unspecified electronic device.

No investigations have been opened into the matter, law enforcement sources said, but that could change if American Airlines chooses to file a complaint with the Federal Aviation Administration.

FAA spokesman Ian Gregor declined to comment specifically on Baldwin’s case, but said federal authorities can investigate when an airline complains to the FAA about a passenger who refuses to obey a crew member’s instructions.

“If we determine the passenger did in fact disobey a crew member’s instructions, we can propose to fine that passenger,” Gregor said. “The passenger could appeal our proposed fine.”

At least two passengers on the flight reported the incident on Twitter.

Michael J. Wolf, under the handle @mjw, tweeted, “On an AA flight at LAX. Alec Baldwin removed from the plane We had to go back to the gate. Terrible that everyone had to wait.”

Another Twitter user, @GrantCardOne, said, “#Alec Baldwin is getting kicked off of AA flight as I tweet this!… Didn’t have his Capitol One Card and Abusive to attendant is what I was told by AA authority.”

Baldwin also tweeted: “Flight attendant on American reamed me out 4 playing WORDS W FRIENDS while we sat at the gate, not moving.”
American placed him on a 3 p.m. flight, Baldwin tweeted: “The flight attendants already look…..smarter.”


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