'Air rage' woman who shouted 'Everybody dies if its corona or not' has sentencing further adjourned

'Air rage' woman who shouted 'Everybody dies if its corona or not' has sentencing further adjourned

A WOMAN who was involved in an 'air rage' incident when a video clip showed her not wearing a mask and appearing to cough whilst saying 'everybody dies if it's corona or not,' has had the case at Antrim Magistrates Court, sitting in Ballymena, further adjourned.

Sarah McGuire (40), of Tyrconnell Street in Derry/Londonderry, has admitted charges including assault; being disorderly at Belfast International Airport; failing to obey a pilot's command; behaving in a threatening, abusive, insulting or disorderly manner towards a crew member and resisting a police officer.

The charges relate to October 18, 2020.

A video clip of the incident was shared on social media and showed the defendant making an outburst as she left the plane which was still on the ground in Belfast.

The defendant appeared at court on Tuesday via a video link from a solicitor's office.

District Judge Nigel Broderick reminded the court of the facts of the incident saying on October 18, 2020, McGuire was a "disruptive passenger on a flight to Edinburgh".

He added: "In the bar there was an assault".

A prosecutor said: "She had been off-loaded from a flight which was bound for Edinburgh. A member of staff at the bar had advised police that the female had 'assaulted' him by removing her mask and coughing on him.

"He believed that she was going to strike him at the time.

"It later transpired that following enquiries with easyJet crew onboard the aircraft that she had been verbally abusive to crew and other passengers, coughing over passengers, shouting 'Everybody dies'."

Judge Broderick noted sentencing had been deferred last April with a condition that McGuire did not re-offend.

The court heard that McGuire had then failed to appear at court last October and an arrest warrant had been issued which was executed on December 1 and she received bail on December 10.

The case had then been adjourned to December 21 and subsequently to January 18.

The prosecutor said the defendant has now been accused over another alleged incident - three assaults on police, resisting police, being disorderly and criminal damage on November 29 last year.

The prosecutor said that case was listed for court in Derry/Londonderrry for January 20.

A defence lawyer said McGuire had not attended court in October as she had been in Scotland celebrating a child's birthday.

Judge Broderick told the defence lawyer he could deal with the defendant at Tuesday's Court "but it may not go well for your client," or he could adjourn the matter pending the outcome of the January 20 case.

The lawyer said it was "likely be be guilty pleas" on January 20.

He said the defendant had not been arrested during the initial six months deferral period but Judge Broderick said: "I think then, the wheels came off because she didn't engage with the deferral in so far as she didn't attend for the deferred date.

"There was an arrest warrant issued and now she has 're-offended'. I can't just ignore that."

The defence lawyer said there was a "terrible context here in relation to this case".

The 'air rage' case was adjourned to January 25 for an update.

The judge said he would not sentence the defendant on that date.

  • Main picture: General picture of Belfast International Airport.