Flight attendants locked an aggressive drunk in the toilet to protect the plane’s passengers

A Jet2 Boeing 737 landing at Newcastle Airport.
David Lauriston was sentenced to 20 months in prison. Robert Smith/MI News/NurPhoto via Getty Images
  • David Lauriston attacked fellow passengers and cabin crew members on a Jet2 flight last year.
  • Cabin crew members attempted to lock Lauriston in the aircraft toilet after his violent attacks.
  • Lauriston was sentenced to 20 months in prison earlier this week.
  • Visit Insider’s homepage for more stories.

A drunk Jet2 passenger who had to be locked in an aircraft toilet and physically restrained after he launched a series of violent attacks on female cabin crew members has been jailed for 20 months.

David Lauriston, from Lesmahagow in Scotland, was on board a Jet2 flight from Glasgow to Bodrum, Turkey, on September 21, 2020, when he began to hurl slurs at fellow passengers on the plane, Manchester Crown Court heard earlier this week.

Lauriston was heard calling an Irish couple “Fenian b——ds,” an offensive sectarian slur used in reference to the 19th-century Irish republican movement. Prosecutor Megan Tollitt told the court that the 39-year-old became violent and started making punching actions as the cabin crew intervened.

“He attempted to push past cabin crew,” Tollitt said. “[One member of the crew] described him repeatedly poking her in the face and pushing her in the shoulder.”

Tollitt said the defendant was then threatened to bite a cabin crew member whilst he motioned towards her. The cabin crew and the captain on board decided to divert the plane to Manchester Airport due to the safety risk posed by Lauriston. However, the defendant’s aggressive behavior continued.

After Lauriston indicated that he needed to use the toilet, the cabin crew locked him inside. But he began to kick at the bottom of the door.

“Cabin crew then cleared three seats at the back of the plane. They directed him towards the seats and he continued to be abusive towards staff. He called one a ‘slut and a cow,'” Tollitt said.

“As staff tried to physically restrain him using restraining straps, he grabbed [her] neck scarf and pulled down. He punched the right-hand side of [her] face.”

All members of staff on the flight were put on leave after the incident, according to The Sun newspaper.

In a victim impact statement, one cabin crew member said they had “never experienced this level of violence” in their career.

They said: “I’m unsure whether I will return to flying. It’s been really hanging over my head. I will never forget the crying children and the frightened look on the passenger’s faces.”