Border flight diverted to Atlanta after passenger was found with box cutter


(Reuters) – A Frontier Airlines flight bound for Florida was diverted to the city of Atlanta after a passenger aboard the plane was sighted in possession of a box cutter, the airline said in a statement on Saturday.

“The passenger in question has been taken into custody by the Atlanta Police Department,” a Frontier spokesperson said in a statement.

No one was injured in the incident and passengers were offered a new flight to Tampa, Florida, on Saturday morning.

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Passenger Lillian Hoffman told NBC News that when the suspect went to the bathroom, the person sitting next to him warned her that the suspect had a knife and “threatened to stab people.”

“So I went upstairs to talk to the flight attendants at the front of the plane,” Hoffman told NBC News.

“They eventually told me they would land the plane immediately and we were down in 20 minutes.”

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The airline did not immediately respond to a request for comment about whether the suspect had threatened to stab others on board the plane.

Nearly 3,000 people died in the September 11, 2001 attacks, when al-Qaeda hijackers with box cutters flew planes into the towers of the World Trade Center in New York and the Pentagon in Arlington, Virginia. A fourth plane crashed in Pennsylvania.

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Box cutters are barred from US commercial flights.

(Reporting by Phil Stewart and Diane Bartz in Washington; editing by Sandra Maler)