Vyvianna Quinonez, the Southwest Airlines passenger who attacked a flight attendant last year, has been sentenced to 15 months in prison. A federal judge also ordered her to pay some $33,000 in fines and banned her from flying for three years upon her release from prison.
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Who is Vyvianna Quinonez?
Vyvianna Quinonez is a 29-year-old from Antelope, California. She has studied at Sierra College and California State University-Sacramento and worked as a server at a restaurant.
In May 2021, she attacked an attendant, knocking out two of her teeth. The incident took place on a flight headed from Sacramento to San Diego.
A video of the incident that went viral on social media showed Quinonez punching the flight attendant multiple times, leaving her with a bloody mouth and face. Following the assault, Quinonez was led off of the flight by police.
“Our reports indicate that a passenger physically assaulted a flight attendant upon landing on Flight #700 from Sacramento to San Diego. The passenger repeatedly ignored standard inflight instructions and became verbally and physically abusive upon landing. Law enforcement officials were requested to meet the flight upon arrival, and the passenger was taken into custody,” Southwest Airlines had said at the time.
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The passenger was charged with felony battery and released from prison after posting $35,000 bail. She then appeared in San Diego County court on September 30.
On Tuesday, she was sentenced to 15 months imprisonment.
“During the flight’s final descent, Quinonez failed to comply with federal rules and regulations. She was not wearing her seat belt, pulled her tray table down, and was not wearing her facemask properly. Court documents state that Quinonez failed to comply when a flight attendant instructed her to fasten her seatbelt. A short time later, another flight attendant instructed Quinonez to fasten her seat belt and stow her tray table for her own safety and wear her mask correctly. Quinonez did not comply and talked back to the flight attendant while shouting profanities,” DOJ wrote in a statement.