A British charity boss and her daughter are facing up to two years jail after they started a drunken mid-air ‘riot’ on board a passenger jet as they were flying out on holiday to Morocco.
Karin Parkes, 56, and former civil servant Carrie Parkes, 34, triggered a ‘full on fight’ on the January 19 easyJet flight from Manchester last year after they were told off by cabin crew for swearing after downing wine and duty free pink gin.
The brawl, involving up to 20 men at 30,000 feet, took place in front of terrified staff who desperately tried to calm the two women down in front of 186 passengers.
Despite the attempts of staff however, mother-of-two Carrie stuck her fingers in her ears and said: ‘I’m not listening to that vile c***.’
A cabin manager also urged the group to refrain from using bad language but was told: ‘You can f*** off you c***. Do what the f*** you want I’m not a****. We will see what happens.’
The captain of the aircraft which was flying from Manchester to the Moroccan city of Agadir eventually had to divert to Casablanca after staff told him the rear of the cabin where the group were sitting was ‘out of control.’
At Manchester magistrates court Karin Parkes, 56, (left, outside court) and former civil servant Carrie Parkes, 34, (right, outside court) were convicted of being drunk on an aircraft after a district judge condemned them over the ‘horrific and chaotic’ atmosphere on the plane
The pair (Carrie Parkes is pictured) were granted unconditional bail but will be sentenced next month by a crown court judge who will have powers to impose tougher sentences
During the mayhem Karin Parkes who is a manager for charitable organisation One Fylde, which provides home care for the disabled, swung a punch at a steward.
And Carrie had to be forcibly held down by other passengers after she demanded to use the toilet when the plane was coming into land.
A virtually empty one litre bottle of Gordon’s Pink Gin and empty bottles of vodka were found near their seats.
The pair, both from Blackpool, Lancashire, were later detained by police after being booed off of the plane by other passengers.
At Manchester magistrates court both women were convicted of being drunk on an aircraft after a district judge condemned them over the ‘horrific and chaotic’ atmosphere on the plane.
Karin was also convicted of assault and a third passenger Jonathan Thomas, 36, also from Blackpool was convicted of being drunk on an aircraft.
All were granted unconditional bail but will be sentenced next month by a crown court judge who will have powers to impose tougher sentences. The trio who denied wrongdoing have since been banned from easyJet flights for ten years.
The incident took place after flight EZ1905 took off at 3.30pm from Terminal One, Manchester.
Originally Karin was supposed to be going with her partner, Thomas and another a work colleague but Carrie joined them last minute after the colleague dropped out due to illness.
The incident took place after easyJet flight EZ1905 took off on January 19 last year from Terminal One, Manchester (pictured, Carrie Parkes, left, with mother Karin)
While waiting to board the daughter bought the pink gin in a duty free store before she and her mother later began consuming it at the rear of the aircraft and talking animatedly to a party of 14 men who were thought to be heading out on a ‘boys-only’ holiday.
Cabin manager Liam Dickson said: ‘There were people at the back being loud and using bad language.
‘I addressed this an hour into the flight but as I turned away I heard abuse being thrown at me – I knew it was daughter’s voice because I had just been talking to her.
‘I said there is no need to speak to me like that but she wasn’t interested – I could tell she had had a few drinks.
‘Her mother was trying to control her trying to knock her on the arm saying “don’t speak to him like that” and initially it did reassure me.
‘But later there was more commotion and there was a couple of bags of alcohol being removed which they had been consuming on board the plane.
‘It was very rowdy at this point there was a lot of swearing going on.’
‘I was trying to calm everyone down but there was now people stood up, there was bad language they were still being really abusive towards the crew.
‘The mother did listen but the daughter didn’t and when I came back down said “Here’s that vile c..t again”‘.
A virtually empty one litre bottle of Gordon’s Pink Gin and empty bottles of vodka were found near the seats of mother and daughter Carrie and Karin Parkes on the flight (pictured, Carrie Parkes with mother Karin, left)
Mr Dickson also revealed how the group had brought a speaker on board the flight and were playing music that was ‘quite loud’. He told them they needed to switch it off and refused to serve them any more alcohol.
But by this point the group were getting ‘louder and louder’ and Mr Dickson could ‘smell alcohol’ on the mother.
He said: ‘The daughter was with two men beside her and she was punching the seats. Her eyes were glazed she was very red in the face. she was trying to kneel on the seat but kept falling back.
‘Then the mother started coming towards me she was staggering towards me and again I could smell alcohol.
‘Her words were “You’ve got no duty of care for my daughter” and she did actually put her fists up towards me I managed to step back her knuckles did catch the right side of my jaw. She was very close. She was just out of control.
‘There were lads at this point who had jumped out of their seats and I didn’t know if they were coming to protect or attack us. I stepped back and there was quite a big passenger who had grabbed Karin by her arms and dragged her to the back galley.
‘There was a lot of fists flying around with other passengers. It was as if there was a riot happening at the back of the cabin and there were at least 15 to 20 men stood up at this point and I was very concerned.
‘I actually went into the flight deck to tell them that the cabin was out of control and a full on fight was happening. I requested a divert straight away, the captain just asked me to keep it under control.
‘The whole plane knew what was happening and Carrie was screaming and shouting – she was out of control and the crew members were trying to advise her to get back in her seat she was up in the aisle as we were landing.
‘Carrie took a while to get off – she was in the galley crying to the crew members. There was a lot of kicking off, screaming, shouting.
‘She had her fingers up towards the passengers telling them to “f*** off”. She made quite a big scene while she was getting off the aircraft.
‘It was a very hard situation to deal with. They were out of control, threatening and abusive and they were all intoxicated. With the females you could physically smell the alcohol – it was quite a strong smell.’
Carrie (pictured outside Manchester Magistrates’ Court) claimed she had been drinking wine to calm herself when she realised she did not have her medication for bipolar disorder with her on the flight
Air stewardess Beth Halliwell also recalled the scene inside the aircraft as the mother and daughter unleashed chaos.
She said: ‘There was a lady passenger who asked if she could she move seats saying: “they are doing my head in.”
‘It then got out of control and I started to see people jumped up and arms flailing. My colleagues were very shaken up like we had lost all control of the cabin. When I got towards the back there was a lot of shouting and swearing going on towards Liam.
‘Carrie was calling him a “c***” and a “t***”‘. We tried to tell Carrie to sit back down until we were on the ground and it was safe but she would get back up again.
‘I remember Karin shouting “this is all your fault” and it seemed like Carrie was shouting across. I was quite scared.
‘Karin seemed regretful for it getting out of hand but her speech was quite slurred. I have never been so scared in my life at work it was very intimidating it was just not a nice experience at all.’
Carrie claimed she had been drinking wine to calm herself when she realised she did not have her medication for bipolar disorder.
She told the hearing: ‘I was being extremely chatty and loud and my language isn’t the best. When I get excited I’m not aware of my surroundings my mum pulls me up on it be aware of other people.
‘I remember arguing but I have blackouts because of my medication. I have got a whole plane of passengers, 186 people, booing me and one of my triggers is rejection. I must have just lost it on that plane.
‘I can’t remember anything until coming round in a third world hospital with my mum crying. I apologise for my behaviour but there is triggers and things I am now getting help for. I felt ashamed and humiliated.’
Karin was also convicted of assault and a third passenger Jonathan Thomas, 36, (pictured outside Manchester Magistrates’ Court) also from Blackpool, was convicted of being drunk on an aircraft
Karin accused cabin crew of ‘exaggerating’ the incident and told the hearing: ‘When we got on the plane there was no welcome on board or anything. A lady in front of me turned round and said sarcastically “they are a happy bunch aren’t they?” – meaning the flight crew.
‘Carrie then started to get a bit anxious and went “mum I haven’t got my medication.”
‘She was going a million miles an hour like when she’s moving from the baseline to crisis point. I was hushing Carrie telling her to calm down then something coming over the tannoy saying they are landing the plane because of all this and I was gobsmacked.
‘I stood up in her defence because she’s a vulnerable adult and I’m her mother. She didn’t say the C-word – I would be absolutely disgusted and Carrie knows that she wouldn’t use that word in front of me.’
But finding them guilty District Judge John Temperley said: ‘This was a particularly challenging flight for the crew to manage with one of the passengers describing the atmosphere as horrific and chaotic from the start.
‘One passenger asked to move seats due to intimidating behaviour and Mr Dickson referred to losing control of the cabin.
‘Some passengers were drunk and using threatening language to members of the crew who were frightened and anxious about the way the situation developed.
‘Despite what was going on they were described as professional and composed on what was not a normal flight. The captain wouldn’t have diverted the flight if it wasn’t absolutely necessary – it is not a decision he would have taken lightly.’