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Friday, July 28, 2006
Mo'Nique asked to leave United Airlines flight

Comedienne Mo'Nique is speaking out about how she says she was mistreated by airline personnel over an incident on Sunday, when the actress says she was asked to leave a United Airlines flight.

The star of the big screen's 'Phat Girlz' and host to the small screen's "Mo'Nique's F.A.T. Chance" (a television beauty pageant for large women) said she boarded a flight to New York in first class when, she alleges, flight attendants threw her off the plane without giving her a reason why, referring to her as a "threat."

"I'm in disbelief that it happened to me," she tells ET.

According to Mo'Nique, a flight attendant approached her and addressed her in a rude and unprofessional manner. "The flight attendant comes up to me and says, 'Listen, you need to let your people know ... if they don't straighten out their attitude I'll have them thrown off this flight,'" she said from her hometown of Baltimore this morning. "And I said, 'No, you're not gonna speak to me like that. You're not gonna be rude and disrespectful.' [He said,] 'Well, you know what, I'll have you thrown off, too.' He snapped his fingers and walked away."

She says that the flight attendants were upset that a member of her support team -- who was sitting in coach -- put Mo'Nique's hairdryer in first class where the star was sitting. After she voluntarily got off the plane, a United employee told her that since 9/11, they don't take threats lightly.

"If I am such a threat," Mo'Nique points out, "why am I not being taken out of the airport? Why are you trying to get me on any flight if I posed a terrorist threat? That's not making sense to me."

"They felt it was okay to mistreat me and pull me out of my seat, simply because I would not allow them to be disrespectful," Mo'Nique says. "I'm angry, I'm in shock. It was incredibly humiliating and embarrassing for me. Police were everywhere."

The actress was attempting to fly to New York in order to guest host "The View." She did make that engagement, sitting down with the ladies Monday morning.

After the story broke, United Airlines issued the following statement:

"The safety of all of our passengers and our crew is our top priority, and that we regret that Ms. Imes felt in any way that she was not treated with courtesy and respect. When a situation occurs on a flight that causes a delay, or disruption, we must act in the best interest of all of our customers. It was determined that the best course of action was to accommodate Ms. Imes on a later flight."

etonline


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