ORLANDO, Fla. (AP/CBS4) — A deaf woman who is 5 months pregnant says a man punched her in the stomach and hit her service dog during a confrontation on an airplane as it arrived at a Florida airport.
Hazel Ramirez says she and her partner, Matthew Silvay, were confronted Thursday by Timothy Manley, who objected to their service dog, Zariel, a Great Dane.
Manley says the dog triggered his wife’s allergies as the flight from Colorado Springs to Orlando was making its descent.
An Orlando Police Department report says Manley punched the dog, upsetting Ramirez and Silvay, who yelled at Manley. Ramirez says she was punched during a subsequent physical confrontation with Manley.
Officers took statements and referred the case to the FBI. Ramirez says she plans to press charges.
A Youtube video published Friday shows cell phone videos taken of the incident. One of the cellphone videos appears to belong to Timothy Manley, the man alleged as the aggressor in the encounter.
Manley provided this account in the comments section of the video:
“Had a good time skiing at A-Basin in Colorado early this week. On the flight home we sat behind a family with a great dane. Although Petrini is allergic to dogs she did ok since she took a massive dose of whatever medicine she takes for that. Well the man had me somewhat concerned with the way he was treating his kids, dog, and wife. I could see he had issues. They had a very difficult time keeping the dog confined in front of the seat even though since no-one wanted to sit there they had two extra seats. The dog was hyper and got up into the isle while the plane was approaching the landing. Through kicking and pushing the man was able to get it back under the seats though. When the plane stopped moving naturally a lot of people stood up in the isle. I being quite groggy was reaching down in front of me into my backpack. Upon rising up i found I was staring the great dane in the face. I instinctively pushed it away immediately feeling fear and alarm. The man went berserk and accused me of punching the dog, started pushing his hand in my face and kicking me. I remained calm. Upon attempting to exit the plane I saw he was waiting for me in the corridor between the plane and the terminal. I finally was able to with the help of the stewardess approach the door to the terminal but the man was blocking the entrance. He eventually let all the other passengers exit. At this point I also felt apprehension because since he is deaf and can’t speak well I didn’t know his intentions but it seemed he was wanting a fight and oh, yea during the time in the corridor he was making gestures to me such as the knife across the throat and punching into his fist. So, my wife was kind of getting impatient and said just come through if he toutches you he will be arrested. Well I did force my way throught the door eventually. Unfortunately his wife also by that point was blocking the door, and contrary to her claim I certainly did not strike her. I actually remained quite passive throughout the entire ordeal while he was aggressive the whole time. I calmly proceeded to walk away and then he jumped me. I got up and again calmly walked away. His wife struck my son and attempted to grab his phone and then he proceeded to chase my son around the terminal. We calmly walked away and upon meeting both the terminal police and the Orlando police I told them it was disappointing that it took them so long to arrive and that I had been assaulted. I was not detained or arrested by the police. Quite to the contrary, they detained the man and his family until we were safely away.”
Charges in the case have not been announced.
(© Copyright 2018 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)