Details emerge from plane threat at RIC

By Laura Geller - bio | email

HENRICO, VA (WWBT) - Just after 11:00 Friday night, a U.S. Airways flight from Charlotte was not allowed to taxi to the gate as authorities looked into a threat.

We learned the FBI office in Kansas City is actually investigating the incident.

That's because U.S. Airways flight 1882 originated there and that's where the threat was called in.

"When we landed here, we were home free, so we thought," said passenger Virginia Espree.

Espree thought wrong. She was on flight 1882 which traveled from Kansas City to Charlotte, NC reaching it's final destination in Richmond at ten minutes after 11:00 Friday night.

But it would be more than an hour before these passengers could deplane.

"We're tired," she said. "This was our last leg. This wasn't supposed to have any type of drama."

That drama started with a phone call to Kansas City.

The FBI, however, will not release information about that call, nor will they elaborate on the specifics of the danger.

"Once we were notified that there was a threat to an aircraft, it was determined what aircraft that threat was related to the FBI responded," said Kansas City FBI spokesperson Bridget Patton. "Notifications went out."

While threats against aircrafts are part of the FBI's jurisdiction, Henrico Police told us Saturday both the county and state bomb squads were also called to this frightening scene.

"They took us way out back some place in the dark," said passenger Sherry Baxter. "They left the engines running and wouldn't tell us what was going on."

Many of these passengers learned the reason behind that decision during our interview with airport spokesman Troy Bell.

"Typically if you have a concern about an item on board the aircraft, the aircraft is not brought to the terminal building where there is also public and people waiting to meet the flight," he said.

Authorities screened checked bags and carry-ons, finally returning those items to passengers around 4:15 in the morning when the plane was deemed safe.

"If it's for safety reasons I fully understand that," said passenger Lee Richardson. "Sometimes you have to be inconvenienced."

We checked in with U.S. Airways to see if anything was being done to compensate those who were inconvenienced.

A spokesperson told me their consumer relations team is looking into the incident but because it deals with a security scare, most likely not much will be done.

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