Gregory Lagana of New Jersey has accused an American Airlines flight attendant of “repeatedly” punching him in the face and back during a recent flight from Aruba to Philadelphia and is now suing the airline for $161,000 in damages. Lagana filed a lawsuit in the United States District Court, District of New Jersey alleging he had been left “permanently and severely injured” after the January 5th incident.
Lagana had originally booked tickets with United Airlines in June 2017 to fly back from Aruba but after what the suit describes as “numerous” flight delays and cancellations, he was ultimately rebooked onto two American Airlines flights – first to Charlotte Douglas International Airport and onwards to Philadelphia.
He says he wasn’t involved in any “wrongdoing that jeapordized the safety of the aircraft” and was sat down with his seatbelt fastened when an altercation occured with American Airlines flight attendant Lance Wiley. At this point, the details remain sketchy but Lagana claims he was “punched repeatedly in the face and back of the head” by the flight attendant.
Lagan’s attorney says there was an argument over Wiley serving him drinks although it’s not clear whether anyone witnessed the incident or even if the alleged assault has been reported to law enforcement.
“As a result of the encounter with flight attendant Lance Wiley, plaintiff incurred scalp hematomas, abrasions, swelling, redness, bruising and defensive wounds to his hand,” the lawsuit, which has been obtained by PYOK reads.
Lagana says he has suffered “severe, serious and permanent physical and mental injuries” which include traumatic brain injury, intracranial injury, severe headaches, impairments of attention and back injury and pain.
The lawsuit claims Lagana has been left “permanently and severely injured” and levels the blame at the door of American Airlines because they hired and trained the flight attendant.
In a short statement to USA Today, the airline it was “reviewing the lawsuit and the details of the flight.” We’ve reached out to American for further comment and will update the story once we receive a response.
Lagan’s Linkedin profile suggests he works in the networking marketing and direct sales industry.
Mateusz Maszczynski honed his skills as an international flight attendant at the most prominent airline in the Middle East and has been flying throughout the COVID-19 pandemic for a well-known European airline. Matt is passionate about the aviation industry and has become an expert in passenger experience and human-centric stories. Always keeping an ear close to the ground, Matt's industry insights, analysis and news coverage is frequently relied upon by some of the biggest names in journalism.