A viral video that ricocheted worldwide last month may not be what it seemed, according to the woman shown being dragged off a Southwest Airlines flight in Baltimore.
The airline says that the woman had complained about two dogs aboard the Los Angeles-bound aircraft last Tuesday, stating that she had a life-threatening pet allergy. But the woman could not provide a medical certificate, without which the airline can deny a passenger boarding, Southwest said.
What ensued was a scene that has become all too familiar in air travel.
The passenger refused requests for her to deplane, and law enforcement was called in to remove her from the flight.
This is where the video starts. The officers pull her out of seat. She screams at them, telling them, "Don't touch me." She is dragged down the aisle. She was later arrested and charged with disorderly conduct, failure to obey a reasonable and lawful order, disturbing the peace, obstructing and hindering a police officer, and resisting arrest.
That is one version of the events aboard the Southwest flight.
The woman, Anila Daulatzai, 46, has a very different account of how things unfolded.
According to her lawyers, Daulatzai, a professor at the Maryland Institute College of Art, alleges that she never asked for the dogs to be removed from the plane, never claimed to have life-threatening allergies and was never asked for medical certification. She was forced off the plane, she alleges, because of who she is: a woman of color and of the Islamic faith.