Flying is annoying, especially when babies start crying. I’m not referring to the babies as being annoying but this passenger who allegedly slapped another passenger’s 19 month-old toddler after demanding that the mother of a crying toddler “shut that nigger baby up.”
The incident occurred on February 8th. It’s not so much as a fellow passenger being a dick, but this particular dick is 60 year-old Joe Rickey Hundley,President of an aircraft parts manufacturer headquartered in Hayden, Idaho. He should know better.
As detailed by FBI Agent Daron Cheney, Hundley was traveling to Atlanta from Minneapolis in seat 28A on the MD-90 twin-engine jet. He was seated next to Jessica Bennett, who shared seat 28B with her son Jonah.
Bennett, 33, told investigators that the “aircraft was in final descent” to Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport when her child “started to cry due to the altitude change.” Bennett added that she “was trying to get [her son] to stop crying, but he continued.”
At this point, Bennett recalled, Hundley used the racial epithet as he told her to shut the child up. He then allegedly “turned around and slapped” the toddler in the face “with an open hand, which caused the juvenile victim to scream even louder.” The slap, Bennett said, “caused a scratch below [the child’s] right eye.”
And there were witnesses.
After Hundley hit the child, Agent Cheney reported, Bennett received assistance from several other passengers, including Todd Wooten, who was in seat 16C. Wooten told agents that he “heard derogatory language coming from the rear of the aircraft” and got up to investigate. “According to Mr. Wooten,” Cheney noted, “he saw Joe Rickey Hundley strike” the toddler.
Apparently, he was drunk. Don’t we all slap babies around and hurl racial slurs after a drink?
There’s more at the Smoking Gun.