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Delta Passenger Suing Airline Amid Claims of Assault

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© Delta Air Lines (Photo via Delta)

By Mia Taylor, TravelPulse

A passenger who alleges she was sexually assaulted on a Delta flight is suing the airline.

According to a CBS news report, Delta Air Lines says it will “vigorously oppose” the federal lawsuit filed by Delany Luh, who claims another passenger molested her while she slept.

Luh says the airline allowed the individual who assaulted her to get off the plane “scot-free.”

"I'm like, 'get up! get up!' I'm like, 'What are you doing touching me? What is your problem?' I'm like, 'oh my god! Somebody help me!' And I start bawling," Luh told CBS News correspondent Jamie Yuccas.

CBS reported that last year, the FBI received 63 claims regarding sex assaults on flights compared to 38 in 2014.

In Luh’s case, she says the man sitting next to her placed his hand down her pants and also exposed himself.

"It's very violating…and that's how I felt. You know, I'm just like a piece of meat," she told CBS.

"I was shaking. I'm like, 'this guy had his hand in my pants. I don't know him, he's a stranger, can you please help me?'" Luh added. "She said to me, 'we're going to make a report, don't worry, we got you, you're gonna be safe.' Straight words from her mouth."

Delta responded to the situation by moving Luh, a 23-year-old clothing designer, to another seat. She was also the first passenger to be allowed off the plane after it had landed. Delta customer service representatives were waiting for her upon arrival in Los Angeles.

"And I said, 'where's the police?' I'm like, 'you guys still haven't called the police?' I was like, 'what is wrong with you guys?'" Luh said.

Luh also claims the man who assaulted her was very clearly drunk when he got onto the plane in Minneapolis, noting that he smelled like alcohol. She says this did not stop flight attendants from serving him more drinks.

Altogether, she estimates the man was served six to eight drinks on the flight.

The lawsuit was filed in Tennessee and accuses Delta of negligence for continuing to serve the passenger in question.

Ultimately, Luh feels flight attendants did not do their job.

A Delta spokesman told CBS News that customer safety is its top priority and that the airline does not tolerate the harassment or assault of passengers.

However, the airline disputes Luh's description of what took place on the flight.

"After deplaning, Ms. Luh first informed a Delta agent that she had been improperly touched on the leg by another passenger," the spokesman said. "Delta then immediately reported the incident to local law enforcement for their handling, and our understanding (is) the matter was not pursued."

According to the police report surrounding the matter, Luh had told officials that she woke up with the man's hand on her "right outer thigh above the knee." The report does not mention that the passenger sexually assaulted Luh or exposed himself.

In addition, CBS reported that the FBI had opened an investigation but was unable to corroborate any of Luh’s story and the case was subsequently closed.

"I know it sounds weird but having to explain what happened to me to another man was just – I couldn't do it," Luh said.

Luh claims she was too embarrassed at the time to go into the details with the male police officer. She received a $200 travel voucher for her ordeal. Luh is suing Delta for $6 million in damages but insisted it's not about the money.

Delta Air Lines said its employees are trained to monitor passenger drinking and behavior and take specific steps when handling disruptions such as harassment, assault, and intoxication.

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