Drunk Washington man forcibly removed from Ryanair flight after causing disruption, abused staff and police

A drunk Washington man was forcibly removed from a Ryanair flight from Newcastle to Spain after he caused serious disruption, only to then abuse staff and police in the process.

Graham Walshaw boarded a Ryanair flight at Newcastle International Airport on August 26, 2023, but was drunk and loud, would not be seated and was eventually told to leave the aircraft.

Newcastle Crown Court heard he refused to remove himself from the flight and lashed out when the crew called the police.

He called one police officer a “baldy c***” and kicked another in the shin.

Prosecutor Paul Cross told the court passengers had boarded the plane at around 8.20pm and added: “He had been asked by the crew not to shout, he was asked to move back to the back of the plane.

“Seconds later he was shouting and telling the crew to f*** off.

“He was asked to leave the plane. He smelled strongly of alcohol and his behaviour was disrupting other passengers and could potentially have compromised the safety of the aircraft.”

The court heard even Walshaw’s travelling companion had told him to “leave it” but he continued.

Mr Cross said: “He continued to refuse to leave and that’s why the police were called.

“He was protesting about leaving the plane and the officers tried to explain, he was obviously intoxicated and shouting “****ing lock me up then’.

“Further abuse of the police included calling one officer a ‘baldy ****’ and at one stage he kicked out at one of the police officers.”

Mr Cross said one of the police officers involved had said people of “all ages” take flights and do not want to be disrupted by a drunk person.

The court heard the flight was delayed while it was checked if Walshaw had any baggage on board.

Ian Hudson, defending, said Walshaw is a dad-of-four who has a depressive illness following a bereavement and does not pose a risk to the public.

Walshaw, 43, of Johnson Terrace, Sulgave, Washington, admitted drunkenly entering an aircraft.

Mr Recorder Brian Whitehead told Walshaw: “Police were called to a Ryanair flight due to depart from Newcastle to Spain.

“The police were told you had been asked by cabin crew to quiet down and when you wouldn’t they asked you to move to the rear of the plane then you were asked to leave and you refused.

“The cabin crew and police observed you smelled strongly of alcohol.

“You unfortunately continued to be abusive to the police officers, including kicking one in the shin.”

Walshaw was sentenced to 10 weeks, suspended for 12 months, with rehabilitation and alcohol abstinence requirements.

The recorder said the jail term could be suspended as Walshaw does not pose a risk or danger to the public and because the aircraft was not in the air at the time of the offence

SGM

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