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Published: Friday, 8/22/2014

Cleveland police arrest Maryland man on plane after dispute over cellphone before takeoff


CLEVELAND — Cleveland police say a Maryland traveler who refused to turn off his cellphone and fought with flight attendants as a plane taxied for takeoff was jailed pending disorderly conduct charges.

Federal regulations allow passengers to use cellphones in airplane mode or with cellular service disabled but not for voice communications.

A police spokesman tells The Northeast Ohio Media Group the 27-year-old man argued with attendants and passengers on a Baltimore-bound Southwest Airlines flight departing Cleveland Hopkins International Airport late Thursday night. The captain returned the plane to the gate.

Police Sgt. Ali Pillow says the man refused to leave the plane and ignored orders from police, who arrested him. He was in jail Friday.

A Southwest Airlines spokesman told the newspaper the flight proceeded normally after he was removed.

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