'Hey, you are going to stop touching me': Woman wakes up as she is being sexually assaulted on flight

Cathy Adams
Spirit Airlines removed a family from a flight to New York: Getty Images

A woman says she woke up on a plane to find she was being sexually assaulted.

The 22-year-old was flying with Spirit Airlines from Atlanta to Detroit when she woke up shortly before landing to find a man allegedly touching her.

The student said she was sitting in a middle seat, next to a friend by the window, with the man allegedly responsible for the attack sitting in an aisle seat.

She said she went to sleep while leaning on her friend during the flight and woke up as the plane was preparing to land to find the man with his hand inside the back of her trousers.

The woman, who The Independent has chosen not to identify, told CNN she then jumped up and told the man: “Hey – you are going to stop touching me! Get off of me!”

She said she notified a member of cabin crew, who offered to move her to a different seat before landing. She said she refused because she did not want to leave her friend, requesting instead that the man be moved.

As the plane was near landing by that point, it is understood there was not enough time for either passenger to move.

On landing in Detroit, the woman filed a report with the police at Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County Airport.

A Spirit Airlines spokesperson told CNN: “We take this claim seriously and are in direct contact with the guest. We thank our crew for their quick and professional assistance to address the situation.

“Our flight attendants onboard that flight learned of the alleged incident 18 minutes prior to landing when the guest pressed the call button and received immediate attention.

"Once she told the flight attendant who came to her seat, the flight attendant directed her to a different seat. The cabin crew wanted to move her, as opposed to him, because the move would have left him with an empty seat on one side and an aisle on the other.

“Law enforcement began its investigation immediately after the flight arrived.

“We are supporting law enforcement as they investigate. Questions about that investigation should be directed to them.”

A Detroit Metropolitan airport spokesperson said the FBI was handling the investigation. A FBI spokesperson said that because the investigation was ongoing, they were unable to provide any additional information.

The Independent has contacted Spirit Airlines for further comment.

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