Indian Passenger Arrested After Allegedly Attacking JetBlue Crew


JetBlue passenger Trisha Sen was arrested at a Florida airport on Christmas Eve, after allegedly attacking airline personnel aboard the flight.

By Indiawest

A Southern California woman heading to Bogota, Colombia to meet her family for the holidays was arrested on Christmas Eve after allegedly attacking a JetBlue crew member on a flight from Los Angeles to Fort Lauderdale, Fla.

Trisha Sen, 39, was arrested early morning Dec. 24 by Broward County sheriffs immediately upon landing, and has been charged with a single count of battery. But the Quebec native has told local media that she is the victim, and has displayed arms filled with bruises.

“I did not hit them,” said Sen. “It was self-defense because they were beating me. My entire body is full of bruises.”
“This was done to me on the airplane because the stewardess said I wasn’t complying with her well enough,” the Indo-Canadian said. “So she had the entire staff attack me. And then I was arrested.”

Sen spent Christmas Eve in jail, and Dec. 26 was on an undisclosed amount of bail. She was not allowed to continue on to Bogota to meet her family, but has instead returned to Los Angeles.

Dani Moschella, spokeswoman for the Broward County Sheriff’s Department, told India-West that the incident began when JetBlue flight attendants refused to serve Sen any more alcohol.

“She was aggravated and pacing in the aisle on the plane. An off-duty, uniformed captain was in the cockpit, so the crew asked him to speak to the woman. When confronted, she scratched his face, so an off-duty Los Angeles sheriff’s deputy stepped in to help restrain her,” said Moschella, who could not disclose how much alcohol Sen had previously been served.

According to a Broward County Sheriff’s Department report obtained by India-West, Officer Tom Brent wrote he was summoned to the Fort Lauderdale Airport to look into the matter of a disruptive passenger. Brent said he made contact with the unnamed victim, who said he was allegedly scratched while he was trying to restrain Sen during the flight; the officer stated he observed numerous scratches on the victim’s arms, allegedly caused by Sen who was being detained by the victim for her disorderly behavior.

The report stated Sen was under the influence of drugs and alcohol. A source close to the investigation told India-West that prescription medication combined with excessive alcohol may have caused Sen’s erratic behavior.

Blue-black bruising on the arms is consistent with heroin use, another anonymous source told India-West. Brent said Sen was disruptive and “failing to comply with the flight crew’s instructions while in flight.”

JetBlue spokeswoman Jenny Dervin told India-West that flight crew followed procedure in their handling of Sen. “Inflight crew tried to resolve the issue as the flight was reaching its destination. Sen scratched a pilot – a non-working crew member – who was on board,” she said. In a press statement, JetBlue said Sen allegedly attempted to bite a JetBlue crew member.
Dervin said she could not comment on reports of Sen’s excessive bruising.

“We are not confirming that the bruises were caused by airline personnel,” she said, adding that the incident was being investigated to determine whether Sen had bruises before she boarded the flight.

A passenger on board the JetBlue flight tweeted a video he had taken of Sen’s onboard arrest. “Strangest flight yet — red eye, lady goes nuts and starts yelling all over the place, she is cuffed and subdued in the back of the plane,” tweeted actor Mehdi Merali, noting tangentially that a woman had brought her cat aboard, which eventually got stuck in the toilet.

The video showed at least two officers escorting Sen off the plane.

A Transportation and Security Administration spokesman told India-West that similar incidents occur on an almost-daily basis. TSA rarely gets involved, unless there are potential threats of terrorism, he said.