SANTA ANA — John Wayne Airport officials were forced to speed the landing of a Boeing 757 Saturday evening after a fight broke in mid-flight involving three passengers.
The plane, United Airlines flight 303 from Chicago, was allowed to take a position ahead of several other scheduled flights on its approach after airline officials alerted airport security of the scuffle, said Orange County Sheriff's Lt. Harold Schaffroth.
AFter the plane landed safely at 5:20 p.m., one of the men, David Simmons, 31, of Brea was taken to UCI Medical Center in Orange where he was treated for a mild head injury and released.
Simmons reportedly became involved in a quarrel with two passengers from Indiana during the flight.
Authorities said John S. Matthews, 48, and his son John C. Matthews, 26, accused Simmons of bumping the younger Matthews' seat. An argument ensued and escalated into a shoving match. During the fight, all three men fell to the floor of the aircraft and Simmons hit his head, Schaffroth said.
The quarrel reportedly broke out just as the closing credits began to roll on the in-flight movie "Lethal Weapon 3," one passenger said.
Airport security detained Matthews and his son after the landing, while authorities interviewed other passengers.
No charges were filed against the men and all were released pending further investigation, Schaffroth said.