Southwest Airlines employee hospitalized after passenger punched her, police say

A Southwest Airlines employee was assaulted by a passenger Saturday afternoon following a “verbal altercation,” the airline said.

The incident happened during boarding for Southwest Flight 4976 from Dallas Love Field to New York’s LaGuardia Airport.

According to Dallas police, the passenger boarded the flight around 12:40 p.m. and headed straight to the back, where she argued with a flight attendant who instructed the passenger to leave the plane.

The passenger then walked to the front of the plane and verbally fought with another Southwest employee before punching that person in the head, police said.

Police arrested the passenger, who faces a charge of aggravated assault.

The victim, who Southwest Airlines identified only as an operations agent, was taken to a local hospital and is in stable condition, police said.

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