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Texas man boards Delta flight using photo of another passenger’s ticket

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A Texas man was arrested after he boarded a Delta Airlines flight in Utah using a photo of another passenger’s ticket, authorities say. 

Wicliff Yves Fleurizard, 26, faces a charge of stowaway on an aircraft after he had boarded a Delta Flight 1683 at Salt Lake City International Airport on March 17, bound for Austin, Texas. 

Fleurizard had been in Utah for a snowboarding trip but was trying to get back to his residence in George, Texas, as he had family from Florida visiting, according to his felony complaint filed in the U.S. District Court of Utah.

He had been booked on a Southwest flight but was later rebooked as the flight was full.

Instead of waiting for his next Southwest flight, he went into the Delta area of the airport, and was seen on surveillance footage taking photos of multiple passenger’s phones and their boarding passes while they were not looking. He then used the pictures on his own phone to ultimately board Flight 1683.

Fleurizard boarded the flight and entered the lavatory in the front of the aircraft where he spent a “significant amount of time” as others were boarding. 

After boarding was complete, Fleurizard made his way to the back lavatory. 

When Fleurizard exited, a flight attendant noticed that there were no seats available on the plane and approached him. But at that point, the aircraft doors had been secured and the aircraft had began to taxi to the runway. 

Fleurizard told a flight attendant that his seat was 21F, but the flight attendant verified that 21F belonged to another person.

Flight attendants got his name and were unable to locate a valid ticket or reservation for him on that Delta flight or any other Delta flight.

The plane ended up returning to the gate and Fleurizard deplaned, and was met by law enforcement.

Authorities interviewed a Delta gate agent who said that a minor female passenger traveling alone had an issue when the gate agent attempted to scan her ticket. When her boarding pass was scanned, the system showed that she was already on board. Fleurizard was seen in surveillance footage snapping a photo of that girl’s phone.

He told authorities that he had been given a Southwest buddy pass ticket for March 16, but there were no available seats on board so he was rebooked for March 17. The second flight ended up being overbooked so he was rebooked for later that same day. But Fleurizard ended up leaving the Southwest boarding area and went into the Delta area.

“Fleurizard admitted he had made a mistake and was only trying to get home,” the complaint said.

TSA said that Fleurizard had been screened at the airport on March 17 without incident using a photo ID that matched the name on the boarding pass.

Delta said it is cooperating with law enforcement and federal agencies in the investigation.

Fleurizard has an active warrant out of Austin, Texas, court documents said. It’s unclear what the warrant is for, but Austin police flagged him as “one having ‘violent tendencies.'”

He is being held in Salt Lake County on a federal detainer, according to online booking records.

It’s not immediately clear if Fleurizard has retained an attorney.

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