TODAY   |  April 14, 2014

Southwest Airlines passengers tackle unruly man

A Southwest Airlines flight on its way from Chicago to Sacramento yesterday had to make an emergency landing on Nebraska because of an unruly passenger, who was subdued by others on the plane.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>>> natalie's here with frightening moments for passengers on a southwest airline 's flight.

>> that's right. good morning, guys. the southwest airlines flight on its way from chicago to sacramento sunday had to make an emergency landing in omaha, nebraska, because of an unruly passenger. other passengers captured the incident on their cell phones and our affiliate kcra got a hold of it.

>> reporter: it's what so many travelers fear, a fellow passenger getting out of control midair.

>> all of a sudden we heard a woman scream way in the back.

>> reporter: witnesses say their heard frantic yelling on southwest flight 722 from chicago to sacramento, with 139 passengers and crew onboard.

>> we saw the stewardess rush to the back, and there was all sorts of commotion.

>> reporter: that commotion was a man trying to open the rear door of the plane.

>> i mean, you just kind of got that bad feeling that something wasn't going right, especially when a bunch of big guys got up and jumped into the aisle immediately and ran towards the back of the plane.

>> reporter: one of those men, dr. scott porter , first thought it was a medical emergency , but soon realized it was a threat.

>> we basically tackled the guy who was back there and pinned him down.

>> reporter: air marshals restrained the man for the rest of the flight, then escorted him off the plane. as they drove him away, those onboard started clapping.

>> this is one time where i might sound a little sexist, but i'm glad there were some burly men on the plane, because they really did what was great.