On Monday, a viral video captured a vicious brawl between the employee and an irate customer, who later turned out to be former Denver Broncos cornerback Brendan Langley, at an airport in New Jersey. The video did not show who started the fight, but United later said the worker had lost his job at United Ground Express, a subsidiary of United.
“United Airlines does not tolerate violence of any kind at our airports or on board our planes and we are working with local authorities in their investigation of this matter,” the airline said in a statement. “United Ground Express informed us that the employee has been terminated.”
The airline did not name the employee who was fired.
Mr Langley, meanwhile, was arrested and then released on his own recognizance, according to the Port Authority. He has been charged with simple assault.
The football player later complained about the incident in a lengthy Twitter rant.
Mr Langley also said he acted in self-defense, and blamed other United employees for not working to “de-escalate” the situation.
“It’s crazy how you can get assaulted by an actual airline employee and defend yourself, but media will run the narrative that they want to,” the former Bronco said, without specifying how he felt the story had been misrepresented. “Every angle shows me walking away from buddy, I had a whole a** flight that morning [and] I did not want any smoke! He followed me all the way down to the kiosk just to cause me bodily harm.”
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