A young man faces not only the paddywagon but up to 20 years behind bars after refusing to wear a mask, throwing a beverage can at another passenger, and mooning flight attendants when confronted on a Delta flight from Ireland to New York. For good measure, he also got in the face of the captain with a closed fist.
Passenger Accused Of Mooning Flight Attendants Among Other Transgressions On Delta Flight From Dublin To New York
The incident occurred onboard Delta Air Lines flight 45, from Dublin (DUB) to New York (JFK) on January 7, 2022. 29-year-old Shane McInerney is accused of the following:
- refusing to wear a mask (he was asked “dozens” of times to put it on)
- kicking the seat of the passenger in front of him
- throwing a can of soda at the head of another passenger
- entering the business class cabin to complain about the food
- while being escorted back to his seat in economy class, pulling down his pants and underwear and mooning flight attendants (and passengers)
- when confronted by captain (over Atlantic), holding up his fist up to the captain’s face and placing his hat on the captain’s head twice
- during final approach to JFK, standing up and refusing to be seated
JUST IN: A Delta passenger faces 20 years in prison after he allegedly refused to wear a mask, went to first class and mooned a flight attendant, put his hat on the captain’s head, and then threw a soda can at another passenger. Shane McInerney is out on 20,000 bond. pic.twitter.com/BmmJ5MzFNG
— Sam Sweeney (@SweeneyABC) January 21, 2022
McInerney now faces up to 20 years in prison and has been released on a $20,000 bond.
As for his punishment, his conduct seems fairly egregious. The mooning is not the big issue: it is assaulting another passenger with a beverage can and creating a hazard for other passengers by standing up during landing and acting erratically onboard. It is not clear if alcohol was involved.
Finally, I do wish to address the term paddywagon and make clear it is not meant in any sort of deragoratory sense. Irish Americans faced immense and disgusting discrimination in the mid 19th century in the USA. There is some debate as to wear the term “paddywagon” originated, but it either refers to the disproportionate number of police officers in New York who were Irish or the disproportionate number of Irish-Americans who were arrested.
And why did I mention the young man was Irish? First, because he refers to himself as an “Irish lad” on his Instagram page, where I pulled the pictures above. I would also consider it a compliment rather than any sort of veiled insult: over the last two years we’ve seen the vast majority of in-flight disturbances that make headlines are Americans. Here, an Irish citizen is at the heart of this matter and that is a distinguishing feature of the story.
While what prompted McInerney to act in the way in which he did is not clear, he has got himself into big trouble over his antics. The question is not whether he will fly Delta home to Ireland (he’s now banned), but whether he will be able to fly home at all or instead face jail time in the USA.
image: shanemcinerney_ / Instagram