Woman says airline didn't protect her from groping
(WJBK) - A Florida man was sentenced to one week in jail for groping a local woman during a flight to Detroit. Now the victim is planning on filing a lawsuit.
"I looked down and his hands were rubbing my leg," the woman says. The incident allegedly happened in July 2016 to the Garden City woman while on a Delta flight from Myrtle Beach to Detroit.
Rhonda says the man came back from the restroom and sat next to her. She says he then put his hands on her legs and began massaging them.
"It continued to escalate; he went inside my shorts," she says.
Christopher Finkley, 41, was a first-class passenger, yet he used the bathroom three rows from the back of the plane where she was sitting. Court documents show he was arrested and that he admitted he likes to sit with his hands in his pants and massage his privates. He called this "his happy place." And this was before the incident with Rhonda.
Finkley was sentenced for assault and indecent exposure and given a seven day jail sentence and one year probation. Rhonda has hired an attorney.
FOX 2: "How can an airline prevent a pervert from doing his thing?"
"What they should've done, after they found out he's masturbating and exposing himself in first class and the stewardess went to the cabin and told the pilot, who radioed ahead to call the police. They should've taken the flight attendants and monitored that man and not allowed that predator to run through the cabin," attorney Jerry Acker says.
Acker says he is negotiating with Delta to resolve this. But if he can't, a lawsuit will be filed. Fox 2 reached out to Delta but did not receive a response.
So why is the woman coming forward now? She says she hopes her story can help someone else.
"For another woman that is traveling, another child that has to be flown somewhere, just for anybody to not go through what I went through."
Delta said the flight mentioned was operated by ExpressJet, a Delta connection partner. Delta and ExpressJet released a statement that they have no comment about the possible lawsuit.