Flight Diverted to Tampa to Remove “Unruly” German Couple

Delta flight to Costa Rica makes a pit stop in Tampa to remove couple

Delta Flight 414 traveling from Atlanta, Georgia to Costa Rica Sunday evening was veered off route, landing in Tampa because of an “unruly” couple from Germany, a spokeswoman said.

The captain made a call to land to have the passengers removed, and afterwards the plane went on to Costa Rica, Delta spokeswoman Chris Kelly Singley said.

The flight departed Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport at 6 p.m. and landed at Tampa International Airport at about 7:30 p.m. 

Tampa International Airport spokeswoman Janet Zink identified the passengers as Peter and Gabriele Strohmaier of Dusseldorf, Germany.

Zink said they were seated in first class and demanded food and champagne and refused to sit down.

According to Zink, no charges have been filed. The FBI and Transportation Security Administration were investigating.

The Associated Press was able to reach the couple at the hotel in Tampa where they were spending Sunday night.

Gabriele Strohmaier said her husband was told that the champagne was gone when he asked for some.

Peter Strohmaier, who told the AP he was a lawyer, said he “did nothing except to say I would like to have the meal and so on ... all normal things.” He added that he didn't get champagne, a meal or even water.

The Delta crew member “exaggerated enormously and felt terribly insulted” after he raised concerns about the food and beverage service, Gabriele Strohmaier said.

The Delta crew member told Peter Strohmaier she was not pleased with his attitude, he said.

“I am not prepared to accept such behavior,” he said.

Rather than listen to his concerns, the crew member walked away, Gabriele Strohmaier said. She denied that they were told to sit down and refused. “No, we were not standing,” she said.

The couple had flown to the U.S. from Germany earlier in the day, and must “take another airline, naturally not Delta” to get to Costa Rica, Gabriele Strohmaier said.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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