NY Orthodox couple arrested after altercation on Spirit flight to Florida


(JTA) — An Orthodox Jewish couple from New York said that a Spirit Airlines attendant harassed them on a flight to Florida, though the company said they ignored safety rules.

Chana and Yisroel Beck and their three infant children boarded the flight to Fort Lauderdale Tuesday from Newark Airport, the New York Post reported Thursday. The couple wanted to take aboard a baby carriage that converts into a seat but a flight attendant firmly told them not to take aboard.

One passenger from Rockland County who is identified in the article only as Binyamin told the Post that the flight attendant used anti-Semitic language, telling a colleague something about “those retarded Jews.”

Another crew member told Yisroel Beck he could not seat with the rest of his family in a three-row seat, with one child on his lap, according to the report. When the plane landed, the couple were escorted by security, detained and questioned. Their return tickets were voided and they were banned from flying Spirit, the couple said.

They said this treatment was unjust and uncalled for.

Spirit spokesman Derek Dombrowski said the Becks have not yet contacted the airline, but that “records indicate that this guest ignored flight and ground crew instructions multiple times, beginning with the boarding process and continuing through landing.”

He said the airline will “launch an investigation and take these matters very seriously.”

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