ltbewr
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Suit Filed Vs. DL-girl Claims Molested On Flight

Fri Oct 12, 2007 2:16 am

http://www.ajc.com/business/content/...tories/2007/10/11/molest_1012.html

The above link discusses that during a Delta flight San Diego-Atlanta on January 6, 2007 an 11 year old unaccompined minor girl says she was molested during a flight by the man sitting next to her. She claims she told her mother of the digusting beheavor upon arrival at ATL, but no criminal charges or arrests were made. The mother shortly after the flight did file a police report. Allegedly she was traumaized by this experience. Recently she (her mom) filed a lawsuit in Atlanta (her home area) vs. Delta on their failures to properly prevent this from happening as she was an UM. I smell money - lots of it for the lawyers and the kid's mother.  dollarsign 
 
FlyEmirates
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RE: Suit Filed Vs. DL-girl Claims Molested On Flight

Fri Oct 12, 2007 12:39 pm

What a load of bullshit - UM passengers should be banned now - too high risk. They arent that common, frequently travel in economy, generate little revenue for an airline yet cause problems like this. This culture of suing for everything in the US is awful, whats the place going to be like in 20 yrs?
 
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tjwgrr
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RE: Suit Filed Vs. DL-girl Claims Molested On Flight

Fri Oct 12, 2007 12:49 pm

Quoting FlyEmirates (Reply 1):
....whats the place going to be like in 20 yrs?

Hola. Bienvenidos a los Estados Unidos.  Wink
Direct KNOBS, maintain 2700' until established on the localizer, cleared ILS runway 26 left approach.
 
flyingcat
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RE: Suit Filed Vs. DL-girl Claims Molested On Flight

Fri Oct 12, 2007 12:59 pm

If her daughter was groped and she waited for her in Atlanta, why did she wait till she got back to Huntsville to report the incident?

[Edited 2007-10-12 06:00:31]
 
juventus
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RE: Suit Filed Vs. DL-girl Claims Molested On Flight

Fri Oct 12, 2007 1:32 pm

All this "suing" bullshit makes me sick to my stomach. Everybody wants to get rich now, not tomorrow, now... I hope the next time a DL 777 needs to dump some fuel, they do it over her house.
 
chase
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RE: Suit Filed Vs. DL-girl Claims Molested On Flight

Fri Oct 12, 2007 1:34 pm

Quoting FlyEmirates (Reply 1):
yet cause problems like this

I don't think the girl "caused" herself to be molested...
 
ltbewr
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RE: Suit Filed Vs. DL-girl Claims Molested On Flight

Fri Oct 12, 2007 1:50 pm

While this incident seems to bring out the anti-children/anti-UM crowd, the fact is the airlines will not give up the UM service despite the liability risks. Assuming this incident is true, It seems like someone at DL made a huge mistake. The UM should have been placed adjacent to a woman or group of women, a couple or a family, or at least near the service area of a/c near the f/a's, not a single man. I know that many hear despise our litigious legal system and greedy lawyers, but a lawsuit may be the only recourse to get some compensation for what happened and to make sure the airlines take their responsibilities seriously as to UM's.
 
MaverickM11
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RE: Suit Filed Vs. DL-girl Claims Molested On Flight

Fri Oct 12, 2007 1:53 pm

Quoting LTBEWR (Thread starter):
lots of it for the lawyers and the kid's mother.

Definitely lots for the lawyers, but probably a pittance for the mother
E pur si muove -Galileo
 
cygnuschicago
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RE: Suit Filed Vs. DL-girl Claims Molested On Flight

Fri Oct 12, 2007 1:56 pm

Interesting, the story doesn't mention any witnesses. I would think, that if someone was doing that, the girl wouldn't sit quietly. She'd push him away, and someone would notice the scuffle.

Mental note to self, never sit next to a woman seated alone on a flight.
If you cannot do the math, your opinion means squat!
 
9V-SPJ
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RE: Suit Filed Vs. DL-girl Claims Molested On Flight

Fri Oct 12, 2007 2:08 pm

Why didn't the girl get the attention of the flight attendants? Did no other passenger see this happening? The FA's can't pay attention to every single person on the aircraft!!!

9V-SPJ
 
flyingcat
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RE: Suit Filed Vs. DL-girl Claims Molested On Flight

Fri Oct 12, 2007 2:16 pm

Quoting LTBEWR (Reply 6):
The UM should have been placed adjacent to a woman or group of women, a couple or a family, or at least near the service area of a/c near the f/a's, not a single man.

You are assuming he was single. His family could have been easily in the next row or his wife might have been asleep next to him.
 
Gabrielz
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RE: Suit Filed Vs. DL-girl Claims Molested On Flight

Fri Oct 12, 2007 2:18 pm

Quoting LTBEWR (Reply 6):
The UM should have been placed adjacent to a woman or group of women, a couple or a family, or at least near the service area of a/c near the f/a's, not a single man.

Sorry, LTBEWR, why shouldn't a girl be placed next to a single man again? We're too high risk for molestation?

 
star_world
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RE: Suit Filed Vs. DL-girl Claims Molested On Flight

Fri Oct 12, 2007 2:24 pm

Quoting Gabrielz (Reply 11):
Sorry, LTBEWR, why shouldn't a girl be placed next to a single man again? We're too high risk for molestation?

Many airlines have this as their policy - regardless of whether it's right or wrong.
 
MaverickM11
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RE: Suit Filed Vs. DL-girl Claims Molested On Flight

Fri Oct 12, 2007 2:37 pm

Quoting Gabrielz (Reply 11):
Sorry, LTBEWR, why shouldn't a girl be placed next to a single man again? We're too high risk for molestation?

Too easily sued probably...
E pur si muove -Galileo
 
georgiaame
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RE: Suit Filed Vs. DL-girl Claims Molested On Flight

Fri Oct 12, 2007 2:44 pm

Tawana Brawley revisited. Delta has problems, but this is ludicrous and not one of them. Remember, the lawyers get 30%
"Trust, but verify!" An old Russian proverb, quoted often by a modern American hero
 
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seabosdca
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RE: Suit Filed Vs. DL-girl Claims Molested On Flight

Fri Oct 12, 2007 2:51 pm

Quoting CygnusChicago (Reply 8):
Mental note to self, never sit next to a woman seated alone on a flight.

The frustrating thing is that false accusations -- which often happen -- just reduce the credibility of the true ones, where someone needs to be held liable, and where a serious social problem is at work.

When I used to drive transit bus I dreaded the situation where there was a single female passenger on my bus near the beginning or end of a route. I stayed totally silent, kept my hands visible and on the controls, and kept my eyes outside the bus at all times. We had several drivers who were victims of false accusations made to extort money from the deep-pocketed agency we worked for.

In the case that started this thread, we'll need to know a lot more facts before we can evaluate the claim. If true, DL should only be held liable if it had some reason to suspect the passenger before it made the seat assignment. Also if true, the passenger should be thrown in jail.
 
Arrow
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RE: Suit Filed Vs. DL-girl Claims Molested On Flight

Fri Oct 12, 2007 3:11 pm

What's missing from this story is any comment from any of the police who presumably investigated this alleged incident. And of course Delta refuses to comment. Possibly their hands are tied in terms of an ongoing investigation, and the fact that confidentiality provisions come into play when a minor is involved.

It may well have played out exactly the way the girl described, and it may not. There is a passenger list available to police and I suspect it wouldn't take very long to narrow the "suspect" list down -- and there are lots of potential witnesses who at the very least would remember the girl and whoever might have been sitting next to her. Think about that for a minute -- if you are on a 2-3 hour flight, wouldn't you have some recollection about who was sitting around you?
This happened six months ago, and no charges were laid. Why?

All that is known is what is contained in the lawsuit statement of claim, and the comments of the lawyer representing the family. It wouldn't be the first time an overactive imagination resulted in an unfounded accusation. Don't jump to conclusions based on the record so far.
Never let the facts get in the way of a good story.
 
sprout5199
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RE: Suit Filed Vs. DL-girl Claims Molested On Flight

Fri Oct 12, 2007 3:11 pm

This makes me sick. I would sue also if it was one of my daughters. I would also make the police interview everyone who was on that aircraft, do a photo line up to find out who did this, and make sure the local DA files charges.

Quoting Flyingcat (Reply 3):
If her daughter was groped and she waited for her in Atlanta, why did she wait till she got back to Huntsville to report the incident?

It says that she showed the report to the Huntsville police, the Atlanta police and the FBI, makes me think it was a "internal" Delta report. As to why those agency's didn't do anything is beyond me. I dont care if they "switched seats" there is a roster/list of who was on that airplane, so it would be easy to ID this creep.

Quoting CygnusChicago (Reply 8):
Interesting, the story doesn't mention any witnesses. I would think, that if someone was doing that, the girl wouldn't sit quietly. She'd push him away, and someone would notice the scuffle.



Quoting 9V-SPJ (Reply 9):
Why didn't the girl get the attention of the flight attendants? Did no other passenger see this happening? The FA's can't pay attention to every single person on the aircraft!!!

You can't always tell how a little girl will act when this happens, is she scared? embarrassed? confused? Remember she is a 11 year old on an airplane by herself, that is scary in its self.

This is one reason I am afraid to let my daughters fly by themselves when I get them for the summer.

Dan in Jupiter
 
SkyyMaster
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RE: Suit Filed Vs. DL-girl Claims Molested On Flight

Fri Oct 12, 2007 3:13 pm

Quoting CygnusChicago (Reply 8):
Interesting, the story doesn't mention any witnesses. I would think, that if someone was doing that, the girl wouldn't sit quietly. She'd push him away, and someone would notice the scuffle.



Quoting 9V-SPJ (Reply 9):
Why didn't the girl get the attention of the flight attendants?

This is what bothers me. I taught my kids that if an adult makes any advances towards them, regardless of where, they do something to get the attention of others immediately. Why did this girl wait until arrival in ATL to say anything? She may have been intimidated by the man, but a loud yell should have given her sufficient opprotunity to attract someones attention. I'm not saying it didn't happen, I just find the story odd from a number of angles. It doesn't totally add up.
 
MRA
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RE: Suit Filed Vs. DL-girl Claims Molested On Flight

Fri Oct 12, 2007 3:52 pm

I see that most of the posters here are, like me, an adult male. Let's not jump to conclusions about the girl simply because she didn't react to the alleged incident in the same way that we would.

As Sprout5199 said, an 11 year old girl thinks and acts differently than adult / middle-aged men. I'm no fan of frivolous lawsuits (despite being a lawyer), but I agree that if it were my daughter who told me a similar story, I would also be doing a hell of a lot, including bringing a civil suit.

I am really surprised at the reactions of some members here about the suit - it isn't as if the mother is claiming the daughter did not get the snack she ordered or that someone spilled a drink on her, but that someone molested her! Just as we do not have any of the facts with which to form an opinion against DL, we shouldn't immediately slam the mother and, especially, the 11 year old girl in question.
"Yeah, well, you know, that's just, like, your opinion, man." - The Dude
 
DL787932ER
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RE: Suit Filed Vs. DL-girl Claims Molested On Flight

Fri Oct 12, 2007 4:14 pm

Frivolous. Not because I don't believe the girl, but because if one does believe her, there's nothing the airline could have done. They didn't seat her next to this lone man; according to the story he moved seats on his own accord, and when he started molesting the girl apparently she didn't yell or make any kind of fuss. How should the airline know that there is a problem if the girl doesn't speak up until after the flight when the suspect is already gone? I'm sure if she had yelled or kicked or anything, some passengers would have kicked the guy's ass and he would have gotten arrested as soon as they landed.

It does sound to me a little like the authorities don't believe the story. DL knows the name and contact info of every person on that flight, and it shouldn't be that hard to track down all the adult men for the girl to identify a suspect, assuming the police think things occurred as the girl says. But even if it were true, the suit doesn't have merit.
F L Y D E L T A J E T S
 
ikramerica
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RE: Suit Filed Vs. DL-girl Claims Molested On Flight

Fri Oct 12, 2007 4:20 pm

I hope the story isn't true. it sounds a bit fishy due to the timing of complaints and the lack of support from the police who are normally very sympathetic toward child molestation.

Quoting CygnusChicago (Reply 8):
Interesting, the story doesn't mention any witnesses. I would think, that if someone was doing that, the girl wouldn't sit quietly. She'd push him away, and someone would notice the scuffle.

Can't imagine that if anyone saw it they would stay quiet about it. Which makes it less believable.

Quoting Star_world (Reply 12):
Many airlines have this as their policy - regardless of whether it's right or wrong.

There is no question it is wrong. It's a blatantly discriminatory policy.

Quoting Sprout5199 (Reply 17):
As to why those agency's didn't do anything is beyond me.

Why do you assume they 'didn't do anything'? If it went to three agencies, couldn't we just as easily assume they investigated and determined it to be a crock?
Of all the things to worry about... the Wookie has no pants.
 
AirNZ
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RE: Suit Filed Vs. DL-girl Claims Molested On Flig

Fri Oct 12, 2007 4:40 pm

Quoting MRA (Reply 19):
I am really surprised at the reactions of some members here about the suit - it isn't as if the mother is claiming the daughter did not get the snack she ordered or that someone spilled a drink on her, but that someone molested her! Just as we do not have any of the facts with which to form an opinion against DL, we shouldn't immediately slam the mother and, especially, the 11 year old girl in question.

I agree wholeheartedly!!
A lot of posters on here must have real pride in themselves, and 'importance' because they class themselves aviation enthuasiasts.......being able to dictate how a little 11 year -old should act in these cases, and probably unbelievably frightened and humiliated. Such utter BS and the very same one's in who's eyes legacy carriers can simply do no wrong, so you proudly dismiss the little girl's version out of hand without knowing any facts either way! Absolutely disgusting!
Flown:F27/TU134/Viscount/Trident/BAC111/727/737/747/757/767/777/300/310/320/321/330/340/DC9/DC10/Dash8/Shorts330/BAe146
 
sprout5199
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RE: Suit Filed Vs. DL-girl Claims Molested On Flight

Fri Oct 12, 2007 5:02 pm

Quoting Ikramerica (Reply 21):
Why do you assume they 'didn't do anything'? If it went to three agencies, couldn't we just as easily assume they investigated and determined it to be a crock?

This is true. However, from the jist of the story, it sounds like nobody did ANY type of investigation on this---"no suspects", "they switched seats" is a crock. If anything they should have at least run all male names to see if any have been convicted of this type of crime.

I don't know, this does sound fishy.

Dan in Jupiter
 
cygnuschicago
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RE: Suit Filed Vs. DL-girl Claims Molested On Flight

Fri Oct 12, 2007 5:19 pm

Quoting AirNZ (Reply 22):
being able to dictate how a little 11 year -old should act in these cases, and probably unbelievably frightened and humiliated

Well, a few thoughts:

1) In the US, an 11 year old girl likely knows a lot more about sex and child molestation than most 40 year old posters on this board. We give our kids sex ed before they can read. By age 11, she is going to have be indoctrinated into what the appropriate behavior to molesters is

2) Perhaps it is sloppy journalism, but the article raises a lot of questions. Unaccompanied minors are carefully monitored on flights - I am sure that the DL FAs can confirm this. During a 2-3 hour flight, did the FA not once walk down the aisle to check on his/her charge, and wonder why a man was suddenly sitting next to her? Even is the FA did not confront the man, I cannot believe that he or she does not remember what this man looks like

3) The lack of a police investigation identifying a suspect is telling. It certainly would be no problem to identify the man. Security cameras at the gate, passenger lists, passenger interviews. In the US the police treat child molestation incredibly seriously. The lack of suspect says a lot

So what happened here? Well, without more info we can't be sure. As AirNZ puts it, I'm going to be "disgusting" and propose this two possible options:

a) This girl, again as AirNZ says, was frightened. She was flying alone, scared. And, naturally did what many kids do - imagined her fears to be real. Her mom and teachers had told her to be careful of strangers, so here she imagined that a stranger molested her. At home, excited about the "big trip" she retold this imagined story as fact. Kids do that.

b) Mommy, taking a tip from the "finger-in-the-chilli" lady, was quizzing her kiddie about the trip, and realized she was alone for a while. Sensing a potential business opportunity, she began planting thoughts in little girl's head, and once that was done, called the trusty ambulance chaser in search of the big pay day.
If you cannot do the math, your opinion means squat!
 
avek00
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RE: Suit Filed Vs. DL-girl Claims Molested On Flight

Fri Oct 12, 2007 5:44 pm

Delta has an excellent battery of lawyers, and I'm sure that the matter will be well-litigated on both sides.
Live life to the fullest.
 
MRA
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RE: Suit Filed Vs. DL-girl Claims Molested On Flight

Fri Oct 12, 2007 6:08 pm

Quoting CygnusChicago (Reply 24):
1) In the US, an 11 year old girl likely knows a lot more about sex and child molestation than most 40 year old posters on this board. We give our kids sex ed before they can read. By age 11, she is going to have be indoctrinated into what the appropriate behavior to molesters is

I am not sure how this is relevant to the question of whether DL is liable or if the molestation actually happened. Just because as a society we teach children to act a certain way in situations doesn't mean a) that this girl in particular was conditioned to do so or b) that even if she received such training, she acted upon it. I find the trend in this thread to dismiss the claim outright based on the fact that an 11 year old girl did not yell out or object forcefully to an alleged molestation disturbing in that it places the burden / fault on the alleged victim.

Quoting CygnusChicago (Reply 24):
2) Perhaps it is sloppy journalism, but the article raises a lot of questions. Unaccompanied minors are carefully monitored on flights - I am sure that the DL FAs can confirm this. During a 2-3 hour flight, did the FA not once walk down the aisle to check on his/her charge, and wonder why a man was suddenly sitting next to her? Even is the FA did not confront the man, I cannot believe that he or she does not remember what this man looks like

I think this may be a central question to the suit - that there was a lack of oversight. We know the general policy is to monitor UM, but what actually happened has been brought into question.

Just for the record, I am not at all judging DL or making any conclusions as to the alleged events, but I think the nature of the suit and the underlying claim of traumatic molestation sets this apart from the usual fare of outrageous frivilous lawsuits that the media hypes up.
"Yeah, well, you know, that's just, like, your opinion, man." - The Dude
 
ikramerica
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RE: Suit Filed Vs. DL-girl Claims Molested On Flight

Fri Oct 12, 2007 6:19 pm

Quoting DL787932ER (Reply 20):
It does sound to me a little like the authorities don't believe the story.



Quoting CygnusChicago (Reply 24):
3) The lack of a police investigation identifying a suspect is telling. It certainly would be no problem to identify the man. Security cameras at the gate, passenger lists, passenger interviews. In the US the police treat child molestation incredibly seriously. The lack of suspect says a lot

This is the key. Our country is hyper sensitive when it comes to molestation claims, and that's a good thing usually. So when nobody pursues this despite THREE agencies being involved, what does that say? Generally, everyone is assumed GUILTY in molestation cases.

Which is not to say nothing happened. I don't know. But the lack of action is an indicator. And the decision to sue DL is another.

And frankly, the fact DL didn't settle this is another indicator. Why? Because it's bad press, and it made the front page of every web news site today. If DL actually felt something may have possibly happened, they would have settled if possible.

This means either DL thinks it's a crock, or the plaintiff is demanding a ridiculous amount of money, which would also lead me to believe it's some kind of scam, where the plaintiff's mom thought she could scam a big cash settlement and it didn't work but now she's going forward out of pride.
Of all the things to worry about... the Wookie has no pants.
 
chase
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RE: Suit Filed Vs. DL-girl Claims Molested On Flight

Fri Oct 12, 2007 6:20 pm

Quoting MRA (Reply 26):
that even if she received such training, she acted upon it

Exactly. She was possibly too petrified to move or speak. Or, maybe he told her he had a knife and would stab her if she struggled or called attention to herself.
 
richierich
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RE: Suit Filed Vs. DL-girl Claims Molested On Flight

Fri Oct 12, 2007 6:25 pm

Quoting SkyyMaster (Reply 18):
This is what bothers me. I taught my kids that if an adult makes any advances towards them, regardless of where, they do something to get the attention of others immediately. Why did this girl wait until arrival in ATL to say anything? She may have been intimidated by the man, but a loud yell should have given her sufficient opprotunity to attract someones attention. I'm not saying it didn't happen, I just find the story odd from a number of angles. It doesn't totally add up.

You make too much sense. OK, I'm not a girl and I am not 11 (although I was 11 many moons ago). But if I had flown alone at that age and been - ummmm- inappropriately touched by the man or woman seated next to me, it wouldn't have taken me until Atlanta to say something! It's just weird.

If it happened, please understand that I have complete sympathy for the victim. Regardless of what she should have done, she was the victim. I'm curious as to why the suit is against DL. Were they negligent for not knowing the other passenger was capable of doing this? Did they alerted in-flight and chose to ignore the little girl? No, they are being sued because this is where the money is.

If this story is accurate, the passenger should be arrested and sued, not DL. Unfortunately, the US legal system doesn't work like this.
None shall pass!!!!
 
RIXrat
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RE: Suit Filed Vs. DL-girl Claims Molested On Flight

Fri Oct 12, 2007 6:27 pm

The girl's complaint may be true and then again, it may not. However, if I, as an adult male, was seated next to an unaccompanied minor, male or female, I would quickly ask the F/A to switch my seat. I am in as much jeopardy as the minor. I don't want to go to jail, lose my home and my family just because of some kid's wild dreams.

These kind of setups happen more than you think. Back in the old days you could pick up a crying toddler from the supermarket floor and go looking for his or her "lost" mother. Today, you watch the little kid cry their heart out, because it doesn't pay to be a good Samaritan. Next thing you know, you have the book thrown at you.
 
rampart
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RE: Suit Filed Vs. DL-girl Claims Molested On Flight

Fri Oct 12, 2007 6:41 pm

Quoting CygnusChicago (Reply 8):
Interesting, the story doesn't mention any witnesses. I would think, that if someone was doing that, the girl wouldn't sit quietly. She'd push him away, and someone would notice the scuffle.



Quoting 9V-SPJ (Reply 9):
Why didn't the girl get the attention of the flight attendants? Did no other passenger see this happening?



Quoting SkyyMaster (Reply 18):
This is what bothers me. I taught my kids that if an adult makes any advances towards them, regardless of where, they do something to get the attention of others immediately. Why did this girl wait until arrival in ATL to say anything?

You may recall a common news item in recent years, concerning molestation of children by priests? Some of these childern are now in their 20s and 30s. It took this long to reveal the crime because (a) nobody believed them, and/or (b) they were scared or emabarassed or both. I can't imagine the conflicting emotions that might have gone on in this girl, if it did indeed happen: rage, humiliation, fear, sickness. That it takes afew hours, or days, or years to completely manifest itself is no surprise. I would HOPE my youngster would know what to do in a similar situation, but my god, talk about situations where clear thought is not always present, particulary in a child. Please people, try thinking on both sides of the argument.

Quoting Ikramerica (Reply 21):
There is no question it is wrong. It's a blatantly discriminatory policy.

Statistically, it's adult men, followed by teen males, who do the crime rather than adult women, with minor exceptions. The statistics arent wrong, and the procedure is probably a wise best practice. No need to feel wronged or discriminated, and frankly, it's a bit out of place for this sort of issue.

-Rampart

[Edited 2007-10-12 11:51:59]
 
cygnuschicago
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RE: Suit Filed Vs. DL-girl Claims Molested On Flight

Fri Oct 12, 2007 6:42 pm

Quoting RIXrat (Reply 30):
However, if I, as an adult male, was seated next to an unaccompanied minor, male or female, I would quickly ask the F/A to switch my seat.



Quoting RIXrat (Reply 30):
Back in the old days you could pick up a crying toddler from the supermarket floor and go looking for his or her "lost" mother.

THis is so true. I recall as a lost kid in a mall, about 6 years old, how a kind old gentleman found me and took me to the information desk, where they paged my parents. Today, in the same situation, I would walk away from the kid and not make eye contact.

This thread reminds me of one of a couple of months' ago. The WSJ wrote about how men are seen as predators. Even organizations like "Big brothers" is having trouble recruiting men, as they are too scared of being falsely accused.

Children are unreliable witnesses. Tell a 10 year old a scary, made up story, and he or she will have a nightmare about that, sometimes even imagining it is real. Today, we tell our 6 year olds about sex, and child molesters. No wonder they're accusing people.

Whether or not this girl was abused is unclear. But, as Ikramerica points out, three agencies didn't identify any suspects. I think that is a pretty clear sign.

To me, it's kind of good that DL is getting sued. They may be able to prevail. Imagine if the girl and her Mom had fixated on some poor sod, who then got falsely charged with child molestation.
If you cannot do the math, your opinion means squat!
 
Analog
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RE: Suit Filed Vs. DL-girl Claims Molested On Flig

Fri Oct 12, 2007 6:52 pm

Quoting GeorgiaAME (Reply 14):
Tawana Brawley revisited. Delta has problems, but this is ludicrous and not one of them. Remember, the lawyers get 30%

Please, comparing this to the Tawana Brawley incident is insulting to this girl. That is if you don't have any inside information about the case.

Quoting DL787932ER (Reply 20):
Frivolous. Not because I don't believe the girl, but because if one does believe her, there's nothing the airline could have done.

There is plenty that the airline could have done. Some of it reasonable, some absurd. But there is no way that you can say that "nothing" could have been done. Unless you have good reason to know that the case is a fraud, it's unfair to call this lawsuit frivolous.

Quoting CygnusChicago (Reply 24):

1) In the US, an 11 year old girl likely knows a lot more about sex and child molestation than most 40 year old posters on this board. We give our kids sex ed before they can read.

In Georgia? Lots of American states have a course of "sex before marriage will kill you" as sex ed (excuse the hyperbole), but don't assume that an 11 year old has had any real type of sex ed.

Quoting CygnusChicago (Reply 24):
2) Perhaps it is sloppy journalism, but the article raises a lot of questions. Unaccompanied minors are carefully monitored on flights - I am sure that the DL FAs can confirm this.

Sure, they'll confirm it, but does that make it true on the flight in question? Delta's spokeswoman didn't claim that UMs got special attention on the aircraft (other than being escorted to their seat):
She said Delta has special rules for keeping a close watch on children flying alone, including personally receiving minors from a parent or guardian, taking them to their assigned seat and escorting minors to the person specified to meet them at the destination point. There's also a small surcharge for the service.
 
delta7004
Posts: 37
Joined: Fri Mar 09, 2007 6:39 am

RE: Suit Filed Vs. DL-girl Claims Molested On Flight

Fri Oct 12, 2007 7:17 pm

Not Delta's fault a PASSENGER decided to molest the girl. The F/As can look out for them, but they also have to do their in-flight service, and he probably did it when they weren't looking. The mother should file a lawsuit against the passenger in question, not the airline as there is no possible way for an airline to prevent this from happening. I hope the judge throws out the case, as their is clearly a lack of connection with Delta as the cause.
 
Arrow
Posts: 2325
Joined: Wed Jun 19, 2002 7:44 am

RE: Suit Filed Vs. DL-girl Claims Molested On Flight

Fri Oct 12, 2007 7:20 pm

Quoting Richierich (Reply 29):
If this story is accurate, the passenger should be arrested and sued, not DL. Unfortunately, the US legal system doesn't work like this.

It's not that simple. Before police can arrest someone for a crime they have to have credible evidence that a) a crime has been committed and b) the person they are going to charge committed the crime. Six months after this incident, and despite investigations by two or three police agencies, no one has been charged. Given the confined nature of an airplane, the existence of a complete detailed passenger list, the presence of dozens of potential witnesses (also easy to find and question) who could at least corroborate the identity of the man who sat beside her (If not the crime itself), I think it speaks volumes that no one was charged with anything.

If a man sat beside this girl on that flight, it's almost guaranteed that the police know who it is. And if the only real evidence they have is a "he said/she said" script, it would be hard to make a charge stick in court.

Interesting too, that in a very similar case in 2001, Northwest Airlines gave $500,000 to girl making the same accusation. In that case, according to the story, the guy denied it and no charges were laid. As far as we know, Delta hasn't offered anything to this girl, or if it has it wasn't enough.

Unfortunately, there have been enough cooked-up sexual assault charges exposed over the years that the burden of proof has to be pretty high. If this girl was indeed molested, it would be tragic if she and her family weren't adequately compensated. It would be equally tragic if some guy's reputation was destroyed by a scam. And it's very hard to know where Delta's liability lies. I don't see any negligence here even if the story proves to be true.
Never let the facts get in the way of a good story.
 
ikramerica
Posts: 14997
Joined: Mon May 23, 2005 9:33 am

RE: Suit Filed Vs. DL-girl Claims Molested On Flight

Fri Oct 12, 2007 7:28 pm

Quoting Rampart (Reply 31):
You may recall a common news item in recent years, concerning molestation of children by priests?

Not remotely similar. Those happen over time, gaining a child's trust, in private, and by a respected member of a parish.

This is theoretically a PUBLIC event, by a stranger, with people all around, happening in a matter of 3-4 hours.

They just aren't comparable events.

Quoting Rampart (Reply 31):
Statistically, it's adult men, followed by teen males, who do the crime rather than adult women, with minor exceptions.

Statistically, young muslim males are the most likely terrorist in this decade, but we still strip search japanese grandmothers because we are afraid of offending anyone by profiling.

This is no difference. It's a profiling situation, and if it's not okay to do so to protect the safety of the entire country when it comes to terrorism, it certainly isn't okay to assume every man is going to molest a child in front of 100 potential witnesses.

In actual fact, it's more likely a child will be abused by their OWN PARENTS or RELATIVES than a stranger, so should we make a rule that families must not sit together on planes, just to be safe?

Of course not. Because that would be stupid. As is making an innocent adult move their seat for no reason...
Of all the things to worry about... the Wookie has no pants.
 
DAYflyer
Posts: 3546
Joined: Wed Sep 08, 2004 9:35 pm

RE: Suit Filed Vs. DL-girl Claims Molested On Flight

Fri Oct 12, 2007 7:35 pm

What I want to know was why didnt the UM contact a member of the flight crew when they were still in the air? It would have been easy enough to detain him and the could have landed and had him removed from the flight and jailed.
One Nation Under God
 
MRA
Posts: 31
Joined: Wed Mar 02, 2005 2:35 pm

RE: Suit Filed Vs. DL-girl Claims Molested On Flight

Fri Oct 12, 2007 7:43 pm

Quoting Delta7004 (Reply 34):
Not Delta's fault a PASSENGER decided to molest the girl. The F/As can look out for them, but they also have to do their in-flight service, and he probably did it when they weren't looking. The mother should file a lawsuit against the passenger in question, not the airline as there is no possible way for an airline to prevent this from happening. I hope the judge throws out the case, as their is clearly a lack of connection with Delta as the cause.

I am not sure how you can say that there is clearly a lack of connection because the alleged events happened on a DL flight. The hook for them is whether they were negligent in their responsibilities to the minor, particularly, if they have a policy of monitoring UM and the parents relied on that policy. After seeing some of the responses here, I am waiting for someone here to say "DL only had a responsibility to get her from A to B -- she got what she paid for so why is she complaining???"

Although your profile states that you are 16-20, try to imagine that a little girl in your family (daughter, sister, etc.) claims this happened to her on a flight operated by DL (or, some other airline, whatever) and that you had been told before she flew that the airline would keep an eye on her during the flight. How would you react? Are you saying that you would not even consider a suit?

A lot of people here are assuming that either the daughter must be delusional or that the mother is outright lying. If the latter is true, the mother is a definite monster and hopefully would be taken to task for involving her little girl in this mess. However, the sad truth is that there are monsters out there who simply like to molest children. I do not see how a man molesting a child is any less likely than a scheming mother who is willing to use her daughter to make a fast buck.

Finally, it may come out that there is nothing that DL could have done. I am not in favor of strict liability here. If the alleged events did happen and if DL did everything reasonably expected of them and did not conduct themselves negligently with respect to the alleged victim, then that is too bad for the family. However, we just do not have the facts to know that now. You know, I disagree with the tenor of a lot of the responses here, but I hope you all are right and that the events did not happen.
"Yeah, well, you know, that's just, like, your opinion, man." - The Dude
 
tmamtrak
Posts: 16
Joined: Wed Nov 22, 2006 7:38 am

RE: Suit Filed Vs. DL-girl Claims Molested On Flight

Fri Oct 12, 2007 7:43 pm

I think it's important to take a step back for a moment and consider all the possibilities:

1. It is possible that the story is entirely true as printed/stated by the girl.
2. If she was molested, it is possible that this occurred over a matter of 5 minutes instead of hours. Everyone is assuming that the man moved to the seat next to her and remained there for the rest of the flight, when it is in fact more likely that the man planned this opportunity carefully (in the event that it did occur) around the patterns of the F/As. He could have waited until they had just come by with a beverage service or to pick up service items and then made his move, greatly decreasing the chances of them coming by again in the next few minutes. In addition, we don't know the load factor on this flight that day. The girl could have had an entire row, or even 3 rows to herself, making it less likely for others around her to notice. The shades could have been closed, reducing the available light to see what was going on. If all this occurred in a matter of 5-10 minutes, the odds are actually in favor of not having a crewmember (or even another passenger on the way to the lav or stretching their legs) notice.
3. It is of course also possible that none of this ever happened. Maybe the man moved away from his seat because of a screaming child he wanted to try and get away from. She could have felt like her personal space was encroached upon even if it was an innocent gesture. In this case, what if the F/A asked the man why he was there and he gave her a completely reasonable (and true) explanation? Perhaps they will track down the man in question and find that he's openly gay with a partner of many years. This doesn't completely rule out him molesting her, but it makes it much less logical.

If in fact either of the above are true (especially case #2), Delta would have done nothing wrong. I don't think 10-15 minutes is an unreasonable amount of time between visits from a F/A. (At Amtrak, where I work, they want to see the conductors through the train every 10 minutes). I think most men here would agree that even in the worst possible case, 10 minutes is more than enough time to get the job done, if neccesary.  Wink

If you'd like to jump on my case about something I've said, please feel free, but please also understand that in the event this girl had anyone make unwanted advances on her, or take advantage of her, I don't feel like there should be any mercy for the guilty party in this or any other situation. I just want to bring to light some other possibilities that I didn't think were discussed.
 
MRA
Posts: 31
Joined: Wed Mar 02, 2005 2:35 pm

RE: Suit Filed Vs. DL-girl Claims Molested On Flight

Fri Oct 12, 2007 7:53 pm

Quoting Tmamtrak (Reply 39):
If in fact either of the above are true (especially case #2), Delta would have done nothing wrong. I don't think 10-15 minutes is an unreasonable amount of time between visits from a F/A. (At Amtrak, where I work, they want to see the conductors through the train every 10 minutes). I think most men here would agree that even in the worst possible case, 10 minutes is more than enough time to get the job done, if neccesary.

I agree with this completely. If DL checked in on her reasonably regularly (no one is suggesting that a FA act as a baby sitter and be with her most of the time) and if the girl did not make any indications that she was in trouble during the flight, I am not sure what DL could have done. We just do not know of the facts yet.
"Yeah, well, you know, that's just, like, your opinion, man." - The Dude
 
Mir
Posts: 19491
Joined: Mon Jan 05, 2004 3:55 am

RE: Suit Filed Vs. DL-girl Claims Molested On Flight

Fri Oct 12, 2007 7:53 pm

Quoting RIXrat (Reply 30):
These kind of setups happen more than you think. Back in the old days you could pick up a crying toddler from the supermarket floor and go looking for his or her "lost" mother. Today, you watch the little kid cry their heart out, because it doesn't pay to be a good Samaritan. Next thing you know, you have the book thrown at you.

 checkmark 

Quoting Rampart (Reply 31):
Statistically, it's adult men, followed by teen males, who do the crime rather than adult women, with minor exceptions. The statistics arent wrong, and the procedure is probably a wise best practice. No need to feel wronged or discriminated

Sorry, but I view child molesters as sick and disgusting people, and I definitely feel discriminated and insulted that just because I'm a guy I get looked at as one.

-Mir
7 billion, one nation, imagination...it's a beautiful day
 
Jetsa
Posts: 30
Joined: Sat Sep 15, 2007 12:56 pm

RE: Suit Filed Vs. DL-girl Claims Molested On Flight

Fri Oct 12, 2007 7:59 pm

I've flown as an UM before. It is almost the same as flying with parents. Its pretty sad that people use suing as a way to solve problems/make money.  ashamed 
 
avalon2862
Posts: 25
Joined: Thu Aug 02, 2007 9:36 pm

RE: Suit Filed Vs. DL-girl Claims Molested On Flight

Fri Oct 12, 2007 8:03 pm

Quoting DL787932ER (Reply 20):
Frivolous. Not because I don't believe the girl, but because if one does believe her, there's nothing the airline could have done. They didn't seat her next to this lone man; according to the story he moved seats on his own accord, and when he started molesting the girl apparently she didn't yell or make any kind of fuss. How should the airline know that there is a problem if the girl doesn't speak up until after the flight when the suspect is already gone? I'm sure if she had yelled or kicked or anything, some passengers would have kicked the guy's ass and he would have gotten arrested as soon as they landed.

Amen to that! Makes perfect sense to me!

But seriously.. how is a crime "in progress" supposed to be stopped if no one is aware that a crime is being committed?

Certainly in today's hyper-sensitive airline environment, ANYTHING out of the ordinary on an airplane garners close scrutiny from flight crews (i.e. passengers with middle-eastern names/appearances, improper outfits, and passengers watching movies on iPhones are recent items that spring to mind)

I just find it all too questionable... surely Delta did not totally ignore the child for the ENTIRE flight! And any person (i.e. flight crew member) with a remote sense of responsibility would have noticed a man sitting with this child who was "unaccompanied" and in their charge at the time...

If, indeed, something DID occur, Rather than suing Delta, I would focus my litigious energies on the authorities who purportedly investigated the incident (or rather for their lack thereof) - the local police and/or the FBI!

Supposedly, they investigated, but have not named a suspect or even attempted to find a suspect... if Delta cooperated with the authorities by providing a flight manifest and/or information about every passenger on that flight, then in my eyes, it shows that Delta did what they could, seeing as how no one brought the crime to the attention of the flight crew as it occurred.

Even if it HAD been brought to someone's attention during the flight (i.e. the girl screamed or someone witnessed the incident) how could it be Delta's fault? Seems to me they could only be culpable IF they had seated the man next to the child AND had known his history as a sexual predator! Are they now supposed to screen passenger lists and weed out sexual predators?

(imagine your shock next time you book a flight on DL and they ask you if you've ever been convicted of a crime!)

My feeling is that the mother smells money and that an over-zealous lawyer is fanning the fragrance of cash under her nose!
 
rampart
Posts: 1800
Joined: Sun Aug 07, 2005 5:58 am

RE: Suit Filed Vs. DL-girl Claims Molested On Flight

Fri Oct 12, 2007 8:07 pm

Quoting Ikramerica (Reply 36):
Statistically, young muslim males are the most likely terrorist in this decade, but we still strip search japanese grandmothers because we are afraid of offending anyone by profiling.

This is no difference. It's a profiling situation, and if it's not okay to do so to protect the safety of the entire country when it comes to terrorism, it certainly isn't okay to assume every man is going to molest a child in front of 100 potential witnesses.

In actual fact, it's more likely a child will be abused by their OWN PARENTS or RELATIVES than a stranger, so should we make a rule that families must not sit together on planes, just to be safe?

Of course not. Because that would be stupid. As is making an innocent adult move their seat for no reason...

I anticipated that reply, and concede your points. Yes, it is profiling. (Yes, it is a fact that recent terrorism has been at the hands of young Muslim men. That said, I can see where the terrorism profile may be fleeting, and not wise for us to focus on one single demographic (or one mode), so the whole profiling thing and focus on shampoo, baby food, and shoes always struck me as short-sighted. But that's another thread.) Your point about parents and relatives is also true. However, where an airline or any bystander can't easily intercede, or even know, in a crime being committed by a family member, the airline does accept the unaccompanied minor with some responsibility to watch over that child. So, I still hold that the UM seating policy is a best practice given the alternatives. Again, show some flexibility, you aren't guilty, you are simply helping a situation, if you are asked to move. Would you refuse to move if you had to yield your seat to a handicapped passenger? No, and in fact, you would be breaking the law if you didn't yield.

Quoting Ikramerica (Reply 36):

Not remotely similar. Those happen over time, gaining a child's trust, in private, and by a respected member of a parish.

This is theoretically a PUBLIC event, by a stranger, with people all around, happening in a matter of 3-4 hours.

They just aren't comparable events.

Dividing fine hairs here. The comparison is completely valid becaue of this: The key to my point was that molestation causes complex responses. Would you not agree? It is very difficult to judge how a child will react in either situation, a short term crime of opportunity in a few hours, or a long-term crime that evolves over years. You and I cannot jump to any conclusions, no matter how much we wish the child had responded properly in order to minimize the damage and catch the culprit.

-Rampart
 
MRA
Posts: 31
Joined: Wed Mar 02, 2005 2:35 pm

RE: Suit Filed Vs. DL-girl Claims Molested On Flight

Fri Oct 12, 2007 8:07 pm

Quoting Avalon2862 (Reply 43):
I just find it all too questionable... surely Delta did not totally ignore the child for the ENTIRE flight! And any person (i.e. flight crew member) with a remote sense of responsibility would have noticed a man sitting with this child who was "unaccompanied" and in their charge at the time...

Again, this is probably the central issue of contention in the suit against DL. We cannot assume away the very facts that are in question in order to come up with a conclusion favorable to DL.
"Yeah, well, you know, that's just, like, your opinion, man." - The Dude
 
mpdpilot
Posts: 799
Joined: Fri Jul 28, 2006 6:44 am

RE: Suit Filed Vs. DL-girl Claims Molested On Flight

Fri Oct 12, 2007 9:15 pm

I just wanted to add that I have been a UM before and they do not check on you as much as most parents might like. I find it very easy to believe that the FA's missed the situation and in no way neglecked the child. What I find hard to understand and some of you have pointed it out already, in todays world of scrutinizing of passenger by passengers and crew that no one on board saw anything. That is just odd. maybe if they were at the very front of the aircraft and there weren't anyone else in the row then maybe but then they would be near the galley and probably near the FA's for almost all of the flight. Something is missing here.

Quoting Rampart (Reply 44):
Would you refuse to move if you had to yield your seat to a handicapped passenger? No, and in fact, you would be breaking the law if you didn't yield.



Quoting LTBEWR (Reply 6):
The UM should have been placed adjacent to a woman or group of women, a couple or a family, or at least near the service area of a/c near the f/a's, not a single man.

And to the comment "she should have been seated next to a woman, etc." That is just ludicris, That is insulting to me, even though I have a girlfriend I rarely travel with her and the airline would know so why should I be profiled as a molestor because I travel alone and I am a male come on now. if that is the case and I ever get moved on a flight because of it, I will sue. And the whole thing about handicaped people too yes I will move if I am sitting in a seat designed for them but I won't just willy nilly I hope that was implied in the statement. An just for reference I have a 4 year old sister and letting her travel alone at 11 would scare the crap out of me. But then again letting her take the bus to school would scare me too but if she was molested on the bus I wouldn't sue the bus company I would be looking for the person who did it. This world maybe a scary place to some but suing an airline over something that they had very little control over in my opinion is not helping the situation.
One mile of highway gets you one mile, one mile of runway gets you anywhere.
 
JAGflyer
Posts: 3564
Joined: Tue Aug 10, 2004 5:31 am

RE: Suit Filed Vs. DL-girl Claims Molested On Flight

Fri Oct 12, 2007 9:20 pm

Pfft, not another money hungry unemployed family looking for some free cash.
If you flew today, thank a Flight Dispatcher!
 
MRA
Posts: 31
Joined: Wed Mar 02, 2005 2:35 pm

RE: Suit Filed Vs. DL-girl Claims Molested On Flight

Fri Oct 12, 2007 9:29 pm

Quoting JAGflyer (Reply 47):
Pfft, not another money hungry unemployed family looking for some free cash.

According to the article: "The incident alleged in the lawsuit occurred on Jan. 6 when the girl was on a return trip from San Diego where she was visiting her father, a Marine who was on leave. Her mother, a 31-year-old property manager from Huntsville, was set to meet the plane in Atlanta."

Mother = employed. Father = USMC. So, no, I guess this is not "another money hungry unemployed family looking for some free cash."
"Yeah, well, you know, that's just, like, your opinion, man." - The Dude
 
mpdpilot
Posts: 799
Joined: Fri Jul 28, 2006 6:44 am

RE: Suit Filed Vs. DL-girl Claims Molested On Flight

Fri Oct 12, 2007 9:36 pm

Quoting MRA (Reply 48):
Mother = employed. Father = USMC. So, no, I guess this is not "another money hungry unemployed family looking for some free cash."

I wouldn't say they are overrunning with money either. My aunt and uncle were in the vvery same type of position and they weren't exactly comfortable with all of their finances. I don't know how valid an argument that is.
One mile of highway gets you one mile, one mile of runway gets you anywhere.

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