An NFL player from New Jersey was repeatedly harassed and groped by a drug-addled female passenger aboard a United Airlines flight, according to a new lawsuit that claims the crew didn’t do enough to stop the very inappropriate use of hands.
The unnamed athlete, John Doe 1, said his ordeal began shortly after the red-eye flight departed Los Angeles for Newark Liberty International Airport on Feb. 10.
She allegedly soon began s.e.xually assaulting the pro footballer, who was seated in the middle seat, by “massaging” his knees and thighs, says the lawsuit filed in Los Angeles Superior Court on Monday and obtained by The Post.
A second man seated in the same row, who is also suing as John Doe 2, complained to crew members but they allegedly ignored him, the suit claims.
The complaint describes both John Does as African Americans — the professional athlete living in New Jersey and the second man residing in Philadelphia. The two men did not know each other prior to the flight, their lawyers said.
“Fearful of the perception of being a male victim and the racial stigma of being a young African American male, John Doe 1 patiently pleaded for assailant to stop and removed her hand,” the suit says.
But the alleged s.e.xual assault of John Doe 1 only “intensified,” with the woman “grabbing and groping his quads and then stroking her hand across his lap towards the inside of his leg near his genitals,” the complaint says.
At one point, she also allegedly grabbed his p.e.n.i.s and ripped off the face mask he was wearing, presumably to ward off the coronavirus, the lawsuit states.
When he got up to complain to a flight attendant, the belligerent woman turned her sights on John Doe 2, grabbing his leg and “groin area.”
She was eventually removed to another row after allegedly admitting she was drinking and had popped pills.
Both men said 25 minutes into the flight, they witnessed the woman downing prescription pills, causing her to become “intoxicated,” according to the suit.
The victims were given $150 vouchers for their troubles.
“This is a civil matter, and although we might feel the assailant’s actions were criminal, we are not in a position to seek such redress,” said lawyers Darren Darwish and Benjamin Azizian, who are seeking punitive damages and compensation for the men.
“Accountability and responsibility are at the core of our justice system. We seek to hold accountable those who have harmed our clients through their direct or indirect actions.”
The men claim the abuse could’ve been prevented but crew members “took no action” when they were made aware it was happening, the suit says.
Rachael Rivas, a spokeswoman for United, said “the safety and well-being of our customers is always our top priority.”
“In this instance, the customer involved was moved to a different seat,” she said. “Because litigation is now pending, we’re unable to provide further comment.”