UPDATE 4:00 p.m. ET Footage shared on social media this weekend shows a passenger being forcibly removed from an overbooked United Airlines flight. The passenger was removed from a United Airlines flight from Chicago to Louisville on Sunday night shortly before takeoff at O'Hare International Airport, the Courier-Journal reported. The removed passenger, according to social media accounts of the incident, was a doctor.
"United Airlines overbooked the flight," passenger Audra D. Bridges said in a Facebook post Sunday. "They randomly selected people to kick off so their standby crew could have a seat. This man is a doctor and has to be at the hospital in the morning. He did not want to get off. We are all shaky and so disgusted." According to Bridges, passengers were told at the gate that the flight in question had been overbooked. Vouchers and a hotel stay were offered, "but no one volunteered." Passengers were then selected by "a computer," Bridges said.
Tyler Bridges, who tweeted a breakdown of the incident, also shared a separate video (see below) alleging to show the removed passenger returning to the plane. "I have to go home," the removed passenger, clearly disoriented, is heard saying. Audra D. Bridges told the Courier-Journal that the passenger was once again removed. Other passengers were then reportedly told to "go back to the gate" so that flight officials could "tidy up" the aircraft before leaving the airport. After a two-hour delay, the flight departed.
As spotted by Uproxx, here's another video of the incident from a different angle:
In a statement to Complex Monday, a United spokesperson confirmed the overbooking. "Flight 3411 from Chicago to Louisville was overbooked," the rep told Complex. "After our team looked for volunteers, one customer refused to leave the aircraft voluntarily and law enforcement was asked to come to the gate. We apologize for the overbook situation. Further details on the removed customer should be directed to authorities."
United CEO Oscar Munoz also released a statement on United's Twitter account on Monday afternoon addressing the incident. Munoz apologized for United having to "re-accommodate" customers due to overbooking on the flight on Sunday night:
TMZ reported Monday afternoon that one of the officers involved in the forcible removal of the passenger has been placed on leave. In a statement, the Chicago Department of Aviation said the incident "was not in accordance" with their standard operating procedure.