Track and field star Sha’Carri Richardson was kicked off a flight following an argument with a flight attendant who told the athlete to stop using her phone on Saturday.
In a video she posted to her Instagram account, Richardson spoke to the camera about how it was “vacation time” for her but “flying not working today.” She panned the phone camera over to a male flight attendant urging her to stop using her phone as the overhead announcer was telling passengers to switch off their telephones, tablets, and smart watches for takeoff.
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She responded to the flight attendant while still recording herself with her phone, “You jumped in my video. You’re harassing me at this point. I think you should stop.”
Richardson turned to the other passengers, “You see him, right? Y’all see him, right?”
The flight attendant’s initial comments toward Richardson were not seen in the social media videos.
The 22-year-old athlete continued to argue with a person off camera, “It’s not me. Talk to him. No, don’t talk to me like that, I’m an adult. Do not talk to me like that. Tell him to stop. If you do not know what’s going on, do not yell at me.”
A male flight attendant is heard asking her to stop recording again. However, she refused to stop recording her video. She responded, “I will not stop recording. I’m making a video for myself.”
She insisted the video will “show what you are doing.”
A passenger behind her yelled to “shut the [expletive] up.” Richardson turned to yell back at the woman, “Who the [expletive] are you talking to, ma’am?”
In another posted Instagram video, Richardson told passengers near her that she didn’t like the way the flight attendant was talking to her, calling him “unprofessional.”
“His hands were all in my face,” she told a woman sitting next to her off camera.
An annoyed passenger near Richardson told her, “I’m missing my connection.”
Without sympathy, she responded, “Oh, you’re worried about your connection while a grown man is disrespecting me.”
The passenger pushed back, “I don’t give an [expletive].”
“I don’t give an [expletive]. I didn’t do anything,” Richardson responded to the fellow passenger who claimed to be missing his next flight.
The passenger then called her “selfish” and she retorted, “I’m selfish?”
Richardson described the exchange on her Instagram, “You can hear a Caucasian male state that he doesn’t give a f as a man that male flight attendant is intimidating a woman.”
The track star was then escorted off the plane, and continued to argue with passengers and flight crew as she left. The plane passengers applauded as she exited.
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Richardson floated on social media that she was considering legal action against the airline.
“Tell me if I’ll be wrong to pursue legal actions against the airline @americanair not only did the man threaten me but also an innocent bystander who simply just wanted a picture with me. In the beginning of the video you can hear a Caucasian male state that he doesn’t give a f as a man that male flight attendant is intimidating a woman,” she wrote. “Also the captain not doing anything to help the situation and this flight attendant has the applause when I exited the plane when I’m pretty serious the disrespect I received would not have happened if I was a one of them.”