The United Airlines passenger who made international headlines after being dragged from a flight earlier this month injured himself by resisting, according to police reports from the incident. Dr. David Dao hit his mouth on an arm rest after pulling his arm away from a Chicago Aviation Department officer’s right hand, police reports obtained by Heavy.com and the Associated Press said. The 69-year-old doctor was “flailing and fighting,” James Long of the Chicago Aviation Department sad in his report.
Dao spent three nights in a Chicago hospital with a concussion, broken nose, sinus injury and two missing teeth, his lawyer said at a press conference on April 13. Long said he approached Dao to ask the 69-year-old physician to get off the plane, according to the police report. Long said Dao refused and “folded his arms tightly.” Long said he reached out to “hold” Dao and was able to pull him away from his window seat on the aircraft and move toward the aisle, the police report said.
“But suddenly the subject started flailing and fighting,” Long wrote. The Kentucky resident was one of four people randomly chosen to be “re-accomodated” from the Louisville-bound flight because United needed seats for employees.
Passengers had been offered $800 to fly the following day, but didn’t accept.
A lawyer for Dao said Monday it’s too late for the airline’s CEO to apologize face-to-face and that his client intends to file a lawsuit.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
Jeff Goldman may be reached at
ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — A former Weather Underground radical who drove a getaway car in a bungled 1981 Brinks armored-car robbery that left three people dead was denied parole on Friday despite the fact Gov. Andrew Cuomo praised her behavior as a prisoner when he commuted her sentence last year. Judith Clark has served 35 years of a 75-years-to-life sentence for the suburban New York heist, which led to the deaths of two police officers and a security guard. She won’t be eligible for parole again until April 2019. Cuomo, a Democrat, commuted Clark’s sentence in December to make her eligible for parole, saying she had become a repentant, “impressive” and community-spirited prisoner. Before the commutation, Clark, who’s 67, would not have been eligible for parole consideration until she was 106.
In announcing the commutation last year, Cuomo’s office noted that Clark “received one of the longest sentences of her six co-defendants, the majority of whom are either deceased or no longer in custody” and “received the same sentence as one of the known shooters.”
The Weather Underground was a 1960s group of increasingly violent anti-war activists. Clark called herself a freedom fighter, insisted on representing herself at trial and then refused to go to court, remaining in a cell. In a 2002 sworn statement, she expressed regret and said she had rejected her radical beliefs. Behind bars, she has helped found an HIV/AIDS education program and done other charitable work. But law enforcement groups opposed Clark’s release, and Republican state senators said nearly 10,000 people signed a petition urging the state Board of Parole to keep her locked up.
Clark’s lawyer Steve Zeidman said the decision to deny her parole ignores her record of achievement and transformation behind bars, which included earning a master’s degree, training 11 dogs for service and working with incarcerated mothers and their children. He said more than 1,000 people have written letters calling for her release. The three-member parole board, in explaining its unanimous decision to deny release, said it weighed public support and opposition and Clark’s good prison record. It said it was persuaded against releasing Clark by statements from officials, survivors and affected parties. Clark’s daughter said the decision sent a discouraging message to inmates who worked hard to transform their lives so they could return to their families.
“My mother did not kill anyone, and it’s hard for me to understand who is served by making her die in prison,” Harriet Clark said.
Cuomo spokeswoman Dani Lever said Clark deserved the opportunity to make her case for parole and the commutation gave that to her. She said the governor respects the parole board’s decision. The governor’s decision to commute Clark’s sentence had outraged Michael Paige, whose father, Brinks security guard Peter Paige, was killed in the $1.6 million holdup. Less than an hour after Paige’s killing, two Nyack police officers, Waverly Brown and Sgt. Edward O’Grady, stopped a truck at a roadside checkpoint and were killed in an ambush. Michael Paige said 35 years wasn’t enough time in prison for Clark.
“No,” he said in December. “It’s never enough time.”
He looked like a madman out on a Saturday-night stroll. Here was Warriors forward Draymond Green, leaving the court after Game 3, rumbling through the arena tunnel and past a giant sign on the wall that read, “Welcome to RIP City.”
“That’s what we do!” he shouted. “(Expletive) take the heart! You go after the heart! Go get the mother-(bleeping) heart!”
Green slapped backs. He pointed to his own heart. But he might as well have used his bare hands to pull Portland’s beating ticker from its chest cavity, hold it up, and then take a bite out of it. It was Golden State 119, Portland 113. We all know the Blazers are in over their heads in this series. But it’s their hearts I’m worried about today. Because Green and the Warriors did their best to kill and cook the Trail Blazers season, and I’m not sure what Portland will have left for Game 4.
Will it show? Or pack for Cancun? Portland did everything it could in Game 3. It summoned every possible emotion and seized all advantages. The Blazers started a player with a fracture in his leg. They used lasers in the pregame introductions. At one point, guard Damian Lillard even dunked hard and then stood and gave the Warriors the “Oakland stare.”
Portland was at home playing against a team that hadn’t been great in Game 3s. Kevin Durant was in street clothes across the way. Warriors coach Steve Kerr wasn’t available to coach. If the Trail Blazers were going to make a safe crossing on the Golden State expressway, this was the perfect night to do it, yeah? Up by 17… then, suddenly, with their hearts cut out.
Green’s performance in the hallway was not a show for the security guards and ushers who witnessed it. It’s who he is. Emotional. Unfiltered. Raw. He played 40 minutes and had nine points, eight rebounds and seven assists. The performance was more sledgehammer than scalpel. But Green’s thunderous rant, cast against the sober walk to the locker room on the other side of the building, sums up this series. The Warriors act, when it’s functioning at full strength, might be the best thing in sports. They’re so blasted superior, built so beautifully by general manager Bob Myers. Top to bottom, they’re just flat better. But if this series has done anything, it’s demonstrated that Golden State’s reserves — JaVale McGee and Andre Iguodala, for example — are capable of dominating in stretches, too. The Blazers don’t have that. Jusuf Nurkic getting the start, and hobbling around on one leg, collecting 11 out-of-shape rebounds was a wild twist, but it’s not going to beat the Warriors’ full house.
Green’s team is on a mission. We all know it. They feel like they should have won the whole thing last season. He had his fists clenched at one point as he walked off the court. He pounded his chest. He slapped backs with confidants. He wanted the world to hear all about the surgery he’d just performed. I just don’t know if Portland has enough left after wilting in the second half on Saturday to show up on Monday night and fight for another game in this series. If they do, what does Game 5 mean?
The temptation here is to say that it’s now all about pride for Portland. But let’s be real — it’s also about a tremendous deficit in talent. The Warriors are the most gifted basketball team I’ve ever seen. Even when they’re shaky and shorthanded, as they were on Saturday, they’re still very good. On Saturday night, Portland felt like a guy who forgot to buckle himself into the roller coaster. He held on with two hands. His hat flew off. His sunglasses went next. He was having a great time, right up until he lost his lunch. Nobody died. Nobody got hurt. But man, losing by six at home feels about as good as it gets.
That’s why I hated seeing Nurkic out there. He wasn’t himself. He’s not healthy. The Blazers may feel like they’re on safe ground, but this is a franchise afflicted by big men who suffered from bad feet, knees and bones. So that was Portland’s future out there, unable to jump, hobbling around.
“He was healthy enough to play,” coach Terry Stotts said. They’re a different team without Nurkic, sure. But they’re not a team capable of winning this series. Which is only to say I wish they’d think more like the Warriors, who used common sense and rested Durant. Green focused on Portland’s heart, not its bones, though. He hollered about it. He wailed about it. Anyone in that hallway understood he meant it.
“That’s what we do!” he screamed. “(Expletive) take the heart!”
He’s right. The Warriors did.