An angry passenger who felt a service animal was taking up too much space on a Frontier Airlines flight took out his aggression on the dog…then on his owner, a deaf, pregnant woman. He attacked them both.
The Frontier flight from Colorado Springs to Orlando was nearing its destination when the dog woke up. That’s when Timothy Manley’s wife Petrini began complaining.
Petrini Manley complained of being allergic to dogs as the plane descended and was being taxied to the gate at the Orlando International Airport. The service animal, a Great Dane, woke up and Timothy Manley told police the dog “took up more space than [he] felt it deserved.”
Timothy Manley then punched the service dog, Zariel, causing it to yelp. The dog shook its head and hid under a seat, according to the police report.
This attack startled the dog’s owners, a young deaf couple, who began yelling at Manley. Manley responded by punching the 21-year-old woman in the stomach. She was (and is) 20 weeks pregnant. Her boyfriend then tackled Manley, restraining him until police arrived.
Because this incident occurred on the plane, Orlando police have passed this matter to the FBI. No injuries were reported.
We’ve had a lot of discussion on service dogs and emotional support animals lately. This case centered on a service dog rather than emotional support animal. Manley’s behavior is simply inexcusable…there are no buts about that. Even so, this story once again demonstrates how animals onboard bring out the worst behavior in many passengers.