3:10 PM PDT, October 11, 2021
An American Airlines flight had to make an emergency landing at LaGuardia Airport after a passenger’s vintage camera was mistaken for a bomb.
Video shows passengers evacuating onto the tarmac via the plane’s inflatable slides while the suspected bomber was pinned to the ground on his stomach.
Valerie Falcetta was on the plane. She says passengers pushed and shoved each other to evacuate.
“We thought the plane was going to blow up, because of the turbulence and the way it landed and the way he said, just evacuate the plane right now,” Falcetta said.
Passengers say a man took out his antique camera mid-flight and started playing with it, which alarmed some people on the flight.
“I feel bad for the guy, but they had to do what they had to do. They had to save, not just us — I believe it was 80 passengers,” Falcetta said.
The Joint Terrorism Task Force “determined that there was no criminality on the part of the passenger and he was released.”