Houston, TX - A couple that was headed to their wedding in Costa Rica was kicked off of a United Airlines plane on Saturday, but the couple and the airline can't seem to agree on the facts.
According to KHOU, the incident occurred on United Airlines Flight 1737 at George Bush Intercontinental Airport.
The groom-to-be, Michael Hohl, and bride-to-be, Amber Maxwell, were on a layover after having flown in from Salt Lake City enroute to Liberia, Costa Rica.
Michael Hohl said that he and his fiance were the last to board the plane. When they boarded they say that they noticed a man sprawled across their seats, taking a nap He said that they didn't want to wake the man up and decided to sit three rows up. Hohl said he didn't think it would matter because the flight was half-empty and had plenty of empty seats.
A flight attendant approached them shortly after they sat down in their 'new' seats. She asked them if they were in their 'ticketed' seats. The couple said no and asked if they could get an upgrade, but were told no and to return to their assigned seats.
Michael Hohl said that they returned to their ticketed seats as the flight attendant had asked, and a few minutes later a U.S. Marshal came on the plane and "dragged" Michael Hohl and Amber Maxwell off of the plane; the word "dragged" seems to be used in a metaphorical sense, not literally, as was the case in the now-viral video.
The couple cooperated and got off the plane, but said that they don't understand why.
He said that he was told that "they were being disorderly" and "a hazard to the rest of the flight, to the safety of the other customers."
In a statement, United Airlines said:
"We’re disappointed anytime a customer has an experience that doesn’t measure up to their expectations. These passengers repeatedly attempted to sit in upgraded seating which they did not purchase and they would not follow crew instructions to return to their assigned seats. We’ve been in touch with them and have rebooked them on flights tomorrow."
In its statement, United denied any involvement with the couple except for flight staff. The TSA also denied that any Air Marshals were involved in this incident, according to The New York Post, and the U.S. Marshalls wouldn't take a break from hunting fugitives to eject somebody from a plane.
The couple were rebooked for a flight the following morning but Michael Hohl said that the entire situation was "quite strange" and that they won't be flying United again.
Despite the flight delay, Michael and Amber's wedding is still planned for Thursday, April 20.
The couple's claims don't seem to add up, but when it's their word against the most hated airline in the industry, people seem to be siding with the couple on this one.
Do you think that United Airlines screwed up their customer service again, or is this couple just seeking to piggy-back on the dragging story for 15 minutes of fame? We'd like to hear what you think. Please let us know in the comments.