Terrifying passenger threatens to ‘kill every man on this plane’ before Boston to LA jet is ‘hijacked’
Terrifying footage has been released of the moment a passenger on a United Airlines flight from LA to Boston went berserk and threatened to “kill every man on this plane.”
Francisco Severo Torres, 33, of Leominster, Massachusetts, was charged with one count of interfering and attempted interfering with crew members using a dangerous weapon after stabbing a flight attendant with a broken spoon.
In a video shot by a fellow passenger sitting just a few steps away, Torres can be heard threatening to commit mass murder while urging others to stop him.
The man was seen standing erect in his chair as he yelled at those sitting around him. Then he stood up and made a threatening gesture with his arms as he waved the broken spoon and walked towards the front of the plane, where the attendant was hit three times in the neck.
The video begins after Torres reportedly already turned off the emergency exit and tried to open it, after asking a fellow passenger during the safety briefing where to find the door handle on the safety card.
Francisco Severo Torres, 33, of Leominster, Massachusetts, was seen raging and ranting as he sat in his emergency exit seat on a United flight from Los Angeles to Boston
Torres could be seen raging and ranting as he stood up in his chair and threatened to kill everyone
A photo taken by another person on board shows six people in the plane’s galley trying to restrain Torres as the plane touched down
United Airlines Flight 2609 from Los Angeles to Boston landed safely on Sunday and Torres was apprehended
“So where’s Homeland Security with a gun? Because I’m waiting for them to point the gun at me so I can show everyone that if I take every bullet in that clip, I’ll die – and that I’ll kill every man on this plane,” the suspect threatens.
‘Where are they then? Where is homeland security? Draw the gun! Draw the gun! Aren’t you going to try and stop me?
‘Where are they leading us? Because wherever they go, there will be carnage everywhere. You can run away if you want. I won’t kill you. I am Balthazar. Or raise your hand, ’cause I’m Balthazar… since I took over this plane.’
Balthazar was one of the three wise men in the Bible who visited the baby Jesus.
Passengers watching him were heard exclaiming “oh God” as they witnessed Torres’s antics watching him dart into the aisle and announce he was heading for the cockpit.
While walking down the aisle, he approached two flight attendants who stood in his way and used the spoon to make stabbing motions.
He was restrained by other passengers who, along with other flight attendants, charged forward from the back of the plane.
A photo taken by another person on board shows six people in the plane’s galley trying to restrain Torres as the plane descended.
Torres told investigators he went to the bathroom on the plane and broke a spoon in half to make a weapon. When he came out of the bathroom, Torres went into the galley, disarmed the door, and unsuccessfully tried to open it…Torres admitted to knowing that if he opened the door, many people would die, “according to an indictment as seen by WCVB.
This file photo from earlier this year shows a United Airlines plane taking off
As the nightmare drama unfolded in the cabin, in the front of the cockpit, the flight’s captain radioed air traffic control to tell them that Torres had been restrained by passengers but was “not going quietly,” and that six people held him back while the plane landed.
Conversations between the cockpit crew and air traffic control show how the pilots declared an emergency.
“United 2609… We’re an emergency aircraft now,” said the pilot.
“United 2609, Roger. Cockpit secured and did they try to break through?’ informed air traffic control.
“The cockpit is safe. No attempt to break through in the cockpit,” the pilot confirmed.
“United 2609, Roger. And you declare an emergency?’ air traffic control asked.
“Yes,” replied the pilot.
“United 2609, what happened on board and was the person apprehended?” air traffic control interrogated.
‘Person is arrested, attempt to open outside door, emergency door. That person has been restrained and is being held, but he won’t lie still, he’s just lying there with six capable bodies on top of him,” the pilot told air traffic control.
Torres had boarded United Airlines Flight 2609 in Los Angeles on Sunday, bound for Boston.
He had remained silent for most of the flight when, just 45 minutes before landing, a cabin crew member noticed that an emergency exit had been tampered with.
The flight crew also received an alarm in the cockpit that a starboard side door located between the first class and coach sections of the aircraft had been disabled.
A flight attendant also confirmed that the door’s locking handle had moved from the fully locked position about a quarter of the way to the unlocked position.
The lever for engaging the emergency slide was set to the off position, authorities said. The crew secured the door and slide.
Another flight attendant had noticed that Torres had been seen at the door and thought he had tampered with it. When confronted by the door, Torres asked if cameras showed him tampering with it.
Torres also sat in an emergency exit seat, and it remains unclear if he was going to open a real airplane door or if he had tampered with one of the windows that doubles as an emergency exit.
Other passengers said Torres asked another passenger where the safety card showed where the door handle was located during the pre-takeoff safety briefing.
According to court documents, Torres was also seen pacing in a galley before attacking the flight attendant.
The crew told the captain that he was a threat and that the aircraft should land as soon as possible.
United praised the quick thinking of the crew and passengers.
“Thanks to the prompt action of our crew and customers, a customer was stopped after becoming a security issue on a flight from Los Angeles to Boston,” United said in a statement.
The flight landed safely and was met by police. No serious injuries have been reported.”
The airline said Torres was immediately banned from flying on their flights.
“We will not tolerate violence of any kind on our flights and this customer will be banned from flying United pending an investigation. We are cooperating with the police in their investigation.’
A passenger told investigators that Torres had asked where the door handle was located on the safety card during the flight attendants’ pre-takeoff safety briefing.
Another said Torres paced the plane before attacking the attendant.
The charge of interference and attempted interference with the use of a dangerous weapon by flight crew members and crew carries a prison sentence of up to five years, supervised release and a fine of up to $250,000.