Prepared to fly back to their home in California after vacationing in Hawaii recently, Brian and Brittany Schear were seated on a Delta flight with their two young children when a staff member informed them that they had to give up their two-year-old son’s seat.
When the Schears balked at the request, they were reportedly informed that their failure to deplane would have serious consequences, including a jail sentence and the subsequent loss of their children.
The couple was not issued a refund and was forced to book a hotel room and buy new plane tickets. Now, they’re demanding an apology from the airline.
According to a report in the Daily Mail, Brian Schear said that staff members repeatedly told him: “You have to give up the seat or you’re going to jail, your wife is going to jail and they’ll take your kids from you.”
“As a mother, you have a one-year-old and a two-year-old — it doesn’t matter whether that’s true or false. It put fear in me,” said Brittany Schear.
They posted a video of their heated discussion with airport staff on YouTube. In the video, Brian Schear can be heard asking a staff member: “I’m going to be in jail?” He then said, “Well, you should have thought of [that] before you oversold the flight. I bought that seat!”
The Schears told reporters, “We never thought it was going to get to the point where they were actually getting us all off the flight. As we were leaving the plane, there’s four or five passengers waiting for our seat. The bottom line is, they oversold the flight.”
The couple had originally purchased three plane tickets, planning to fly with their teenaged son while holding the two babies on their laps. However, the son took an earlier flight, leaving the third seat free for the two-year-old… or so they thought until airline staff stated that the extra seat would have to be relinquished to another passenger.
Delta has put out a statement saying, “We are sorry for what this family experienced. Our team has reached out, and we will be talking with them to better understand what happened and come to a resolution.”
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