Skip to content

Woman Tried to Open Airplane Door at 37,000 Feet and Bit the Passenger Who Tried to Stop Her on Flight

“I was thinking about the worst case, probably that plane will crash.”

A woman was arrested after trying to open an airplane door mid-flight and viciously attacking a passenger who tried to stop her. Elom Agbegninou, 34, was on a flight from Houston to Columbus when the incident occurred, and newly released court documents detail just what happened on the plane, including the injuries inflicted on the passenger assisting the flight crew with restraining the woman. According to documents released by the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Arkansas, the woman said that "Jesus told her to open the plane door." Here's what happened.

RELATED: 10 Most Embarrassing Ways People Have Gone Viral This Year

Strange Behavior

Fox 26

Court documents say Agbegninou walked up to the back of the plane mid-flight and stared at the exit door. A flight attendant asked her to either use the bathroom or return to her seat. Another flight attendant said Agbegninou asked to look out of the window. When she was denied her request, Agbegninou pushed past the crew and attempted to open the exit door at 37,000 feet.

Chaos At 37,000 Feet

Fox 26

A passenger heard someone say, "she's trying to open the door," and headed to the back of the plane to help subdue the unruly passenger. Agbegninou was wrestled to the ground, but not before she bit the passenger on the thigh, holding on until the person "worked their fingers up to (her) jawline in an attempt to have (her) release the bite, which she eventually did."

Frightened Passengers

Fox 26

Other passengers on the plane were terrified by the commotion. "They were rushing to the back of the plane to help," passenger Ding Yu told Fox News Digital about the passenger who was attacked. "I was thinking about the worst case, probably that plane will crash, but I know it's a very low probability."

Emergency Landing

A Southwest Airlines plane taking off from the runway at an airport

When Agbegninou was forcibly prevented from further attacking the passenger, she started banging her head on the plane floor. She later said, "Jesus told her to fly to Ohio and Jesus told her to open the plane door." The Southwest flight was forced to make an emergency landing at Bill and Hillary Clinton National Airport in Little Rock, Arkansas, turning what should have been a three-hour trip into a six-hour nightmare.  

Arrested and Removed

Fox 26

Agbegninou was removed from the plane by law enforcement, and the bite victim has been given antibiotics and hepatitis shots at a local hospital. Court documents say the victim called a veterans' crisis hotline after the incident. Agbegninou says she left home without telling her husband and said she was en route to Maryland to stay with a friend—she had no baggage with her on the flight. She admitted trying to open the door and biting the passenger, saying she "became very anxious and normally would not have done those things." Agbegninou could now face charges of assault within the maritime and territorial jurisdiction, plus interference with the flight crew.

Ferozan Mast
Ferozan Mast is a science, health and wellness writer with a passion for making science and research-backed information accessible to a general audience. Read more
Filed Under
 •  •