A passenger on an Alaska Airlines flight from Hawaii to Anchorage has been indicted for assaulting a flight attendant by a federal grand jury, according to a Monday announcement from the office of Alaska District U.S. Attorney Karen Loeffler.
The indictment states that on August 19, 2012, Kyong Cha Lee, 56, intentionally assaulted a flight attendant during a flight 871 to Anchorage. Lee struck the flight attendant with both hands and "profanely" threatened her.
The charge against Lee provides for a maximum sentence of a $5,000 fine, six months in jail, or both, according to Assistant U.S. Attorney Kyle G. French, who presented the case to the grand jury.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation and Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport Police carried out the investigation leading to the indictment.
U.S. Attorney Loeffler stressed the seriousness of the alleged infraction.
"Federal law does not tolerate passengers who physically assault airline crewmembers, and significant fines and jail sentences can be imposed for those who violate these laws," Loeffler said. "Although Ms. Lee's charge is a misdemeanor, flight crew interference incidents can result in a felony conviction, 20 years imprisonment, and fines of up to $250,000."