Stacey Giordano was on a Spirit Airlines flight with her 15-year-old daughter and son from Florida to Michigan in the US in April 2018 when the family had to switch planes in Tampa, ABC 15 reports.
Ms Giordano was sitting in the back of the plane with her son, while her daughter was assigned to a seat in the front.
Then, according to Ms Giordano’s lawyer Jerry Thurswell, the young teenager was removed from the plane due to overbooking, and her seat was given to another passenger.
“They didn’t want to hear anything. They just pulled her off the plane,” Mr Thurswell claimed.
Ms Giordano’s daughter says she tried to reach her mother to let her know she was taken off the plane, but was not able to as her phone was placed in “airplane mode”.
Ms Giordano said she realised her daughter was not on the plane mid-flight.
“When the child says, ‘My mother’s in the back of the plane, why are you taking me off?’, and they just take the child off and say, ‘Sit here, you’ll be on the next flight out’… you don’t just separate a child from their mother,” Mr Thurswell told 7 Action News.
Spirit Airlines reportedly refunded Ms Giordano for a ticket and offered her extra miles.
“The safety and security of our guests is our top priority. It is our practice, however, not to comment on pending litigation,” Spirit Airlines said in a statement.
The teen was put on another flight to her destination hours later, but Ms Giordano and her daughter claim they suffered emotional distress because of the incident.
They are seeking more than $105,000 in damages.
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