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United Passenger Did Not Appear To Act 'Belligerent' (Video)

| by Michael Allen

New footage has surfaced that shows United Airlines passenger Dr. David Dao acting calmly before being violently dragged off the plane by airport security in Chicago on April 9 (video below).

Dao is seen in the video talking on a cell phone, ending his call and telling the officers: "I'm not going."

"I am a physician, I have to work tomorrow," Dao told the security officers, reports Mashable. One officer told Dao that he would be dragged off the plane, and Dao told the officer to do what he had to do.

Though it's indeed a confrontation, it doesn't appear to match United Airline CEO Oscar Munoz's internal email to employees on April 10 that described Dao as "disruptive and belligerent," as reported by the Associated Press:

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He was approached a few more times after that in order to gain his compliance to come off the aircraft, and each time he refused and became more and more disruptive and belligerent. Our agents were left with no choice but to call Chicago Aviation Security Officers to assist in removing the customer from the flight. He repeatedly declined to leave.

This new video does not capture the incident in its entirety, however, as the footage ends with Dao still speaking to the security officers, before they move to drag him out of his seat and off the plane.

Munoz and United were criticized for days on social media for the rough removal of Dao, as well as for their public responses to the incident that left Dao bloodied.

Munoz recently spoke about the incident during the airline's quarterly results call, reports The Telegraph.

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He called the incident a "big failure," but added that customers “believe we will get this fixed and at the end of the day we will be stronger."

The United CEO added: "We are dedicated to setting the standard for customer service among U.S. airlines, as we elevate the experience our customers have with us."

Dao's lawyers have said they are going to sue United Airlines, as well as the city of Chicago.

Aviation law expert Arthur Wolk told Town & Country that Dao has a strong case:

There is nothing in that contract that gives United the right to commit an assault and battery on a passenger. This is not a denied boarding incident, which is covered by the contract; this man was already boarded. This is not an oversold incident, as provided for by the contract; this airplane was not oversold -- every passenger was ticketed and had a seat.

This was not a situation where the passenger was unruly, committed a criminal act, interfered with the flight crew, was incapable of being a passenger by himself or anything of that nature, obviously until they attempted to physically throw him off the airplane. So to me, United Airlines breached their own contract of carriage.

Sources: MashableAssociated Press via CNBCThe Telegraph, Town & Country / Photo credit: Tomas Del Coro/Flickr

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