Woman Removed From Plane After Sparking Cigarette at Fort Lauderdale Airport

Police removed a woman from a Spirit Airlines flight on August 24 after she lit up a cigarette after landing at Florida’s Fort Lauderdale International Airport, the Broward County Sheriff’s Office and the airline confirmed.

Video captured by passenger Julianna Tarsha shows flight attendants approach and inform the woman that police were on their way.

“You’re being detained,” one attendant tells the woman. “Right there, there’s the evidence, right there,” he continues. “You’re in big trouble, right now. You’re going to jail,” he tells her.

Tarsha told Storyful the unruly passenger had already complained prior to take-off from Detroit about not being permitted to smoke on the plane. After landing at Fort Lauderdale, and airline staff announced a 25-minute delay in disembarking, the passenger lit a cigarette, Tarsha said.

Broward County Sheriff’s deputies later arrived at the scene and escorted the woman off the plane, Tarsha’s footage shows. The sheriff’s office told Storyful that the passenger had complied with deputies’ request to leave the plane, and that no arrest was made.

In a statement to Storyful, Spirit Airlines said: "When flight 845 from Detroit was taxiing to the gate in Fort Lauderdale, a passenger inexplicably decided to light a cigarette in violation of Federal law. Flight Attendants noticed the odor and the other Guests were quick to point out who was responsible and hand over what remained of the extinguished cigarette. Our crew summoned law enforcement officers to have them waiting at the gate to remove the passenger. Credit: Julianna Tarsha via Storyful

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