Passenger won’t face charges after prompting plane to make emergency landing at LaGuardia airport

NEW YORK — A passenger will not face charges after prompting a flight to make an emergency landing Saturday at New York City’s LaGuardia Airport, according to multiple reports.

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Authorities told The Associated Press and WABC-TV that American Eagle Flight 4817, operated by Republic Airways under the American Airlines banner, made an emergency landing around 3 p.m. after a passenger reported a man acting suspiciously on the flight. American Eagle is a network of a half-dozen regional carriers that operate under a codeshare agreement with American, according to the airline.

Update 12:20 p.m. EDT Oct. 10: In a statement obtained by the AP, a spokesperson for the U.S. Department of Homeland Security said “nothing harmful was on the aircraft.”

A passenger on the flight, Valerie Falsetta, told WCBS-TV that a woman sitting next to the passenger reported for suspicious behavior “said he was acting weird the whole plane ride.”

“She got up to use the bathroom supposedly and told the pilot (that there was) suspicious stuff in his bag,” she said.

Officials with the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, which operates the airport, characterized the incident as a “misunderstanding,” WABC-TV reported.

Original report: A plane traveling from Indianapolis to New York City landed safely after a “security incident,” officials with the Federal Aviation Administration said Saturday.

American Eagle Flight 4817, operated by Republic Airways, landed at LaGuardia Airport shortly after 3 p.m. EDT, WABC reported.

According to FAA officials, all of the passengers made it safely off the aircraft, WNBC reported. The plane landed after passengers reported suspicious activity from someone on board the flight, a Port Authority spokesperson told the television station.

“American Eagle Flight 4817, operated by Republic Airways with service from Indianapolis to New York (LGA) deplaned on the taxiway at LGA due to a potential security issue,” American Airlines said in a statement. “The aircraft landed safely, and all customers deplaned without incident.”

American Eagle is a regional branch of American Airlines. There were 76 passengers and four crew members aboard the aircraft.

There were no reported injuries to passengers or crew members, according to WABC. Passengers exited the plane on the tarmac.

The passenger’s behavior prompted the plane’s pilot to radio ahead for an emergency, the television station reported.

Additional details of the behavior that caused the alert were not immediately known. The passenger believed to have caused the security concern was taken into custody for questioning, according to WNBC.