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Family kicked off Delta flight, threatened with jail, foster care

11 May 2017

"That did not happen in this case and we apologise", said the airline.

The couple posted the video on YouTube and showed Brian Schear arguing with someone aboard Delta flight 2222 before take-off from Maui to Los Angeles.

Brian Schear said the family had initially purchased a ticket for their teenage son on the red-eye flight, but made a decision to send him home early so that their 2-year-old could have a seat on the plane. Schear told KABC he told Delta he was planning to use the seat for his younger son when they boarded the return flight. They reportedly said that their 18-year-old son, who was reserved on the same flight as theirs, had flown home on an earlier flight and thus, his seat was empty.

According to Schear, there were people waiting to be seated on the seats they vacated so the flight had definitely been overbooked. When will this all stop?

Speaking to CBS2 Mr Schear said: "We never thought it was going to get to the point where they were actually getting us all off the flight". So Schear figured he'd just set his infant son in that seat (strapped into a carseat), since he had paid for it, after all.

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Later in the video, an airline official tells Brian Schear that the Federal Aviation Administration requires that his two-year-old son sit in an adult's lap and is not allowed to have his own seat. The father is heard on tape saying, "Well, you should have thought of that before you oversold the flight".

In the video, Schear was warned that if he did not abide it would be considered a federal offense, and he would be removed from the flight. "He won't sleep unless he's in his vehicle seat".

Brian said the family was not reimbursed for their trouble.

"You and your wife will be in jail and your kids will be put in foster care", the crew member says.

Generally, the Delta policy prohibits passengers from utilizing a ticker that was purchased in another person's name. Per Delta's rules, all tickets are nontransferable, and name changes aren't permitted.

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A spokesman said Delta would not disclose the amount of the refund or compensation. However, the BBC reports that this is at odds with Delta's published advice, which says that for children under two years "we recommend you purchase a seat on the aircraft and use an approved child safety seat".

Delta hasn't explained why the Schears were removed from the plane, USA Today reported, adding that a spokesman has said the flight was not overbooked, contrary to what is heard on the video.

The past few weeks saw several other similar incidents of mistreatment of airline passengers.

The apology came as members of a US Senate committee, holding an inquiry into the industry's customer service, criticised the handling of disputes with passengers, airline fees and the lack of competition in the sector.

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Family kicked off Delta flight, threatened with jail, foster care