Flight Attendant Takes Matters - and Crying Baby - into Her Own Hands

Filed under: In The News, Weird But True

When babies cry, slapping them will not lessen the tears.

When a Southwest Airlines flight attendant realized some parents on Flight 879 from Dallas to Seattle might not clearly understand that, she took matters into her own hands. Literally.

She took the baby from the parents.

On Monday, Lee Ann and Joseph Cid were allegedly arguing on the plane, trying to get their 13-month-old daughter to stop crying, ABC News reports. Police tell the network, several passengers reported seeing Lee Ann Cid slap the baby.

That's when flight attendant Beverly McCurley stepped in.

"McCurley further stated she walked to the rear of the aircraft and observed the mother of the child identified as Lee Ann Cid strike the child with an open hand on the face in an attempt to get the child to stop crying," according to the police report obtained by ABC News.

"McCurley further stated the mother appeared agitated with the child and that the husband continued to yell at his wife to shut up due to her screaming at the child," the report continues.

The police report says McCurley reported that the baby had a black eye, but the parents blamed that on an uncle's dog.

"McCurley then stated she took the child from the mother due to her behavior and walked to the rear of the aircraft with the child identified as a 13-month-old female," the reports says. "McCurley then stated the father identified as Joseph C. Cid walked back to the rear of the aircraft, took custody of the child and stood on the rear of the aircraft until the child fell asleep."

When the plane stopped for a layover at the Albuquerque International Sunport, the Cids were questioned by police. A Southwest Airlines spokeswoman -- who was not identified -- told ABC News this was a procedure "out of precaution for the child."

The Cids were released to continue to their final destination.

Police sources tell ABC News that McCurley did the right thing, but added there is no evidence that the parents were abusing their daughter.

"I think it was a solid move from the part of the flight attendant to take custody of the child," airport Police Chief Marshall Katz tells the network. "It neutralized the situation. It calmed everybody down."

Southwest Airlines representative Whitney Eichinger tells ABC News McCurley never actually "took" the baby.

"She did it as a 'Would you like me to bounce your baby for you?' " Eichinger says. "The family on board was having an altercation and their young child was upset. Our flight attendant offered to the parent -- offered to hold the child on board. Our attendants do that from time to time just to soothe the crying babies because they are used to walking up and down the aisles."

When called for clarification, the Albuquerque Sunport Police sources tell ABC News McCurley took temporary custody of the baby.

The incident took place on board Southwest's Aug. 16 flight, which originated in Dallas and stopped in Albuquerque before continuing to Seattle.

Related: Airplane Jitters When Traveling With Kids? Just Relax

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AdviceMama Says:
Start by teaching him that it is safe to do so.