Sha'Carri Richardson Removed from Plane After Exchange with Flight Attendant on Video

Adam WellsJanuary 21, 2023

EUGENE, OREGON - JUNE 25: Sha'Carri Richardson competes in the women's 200 meter first round during the 2022 USATF Outdoor Championships at Hayward Field on June 25, 2022 in Eugene, Oregon. (Photo by Steph Chambers/Getty Images)
Steph Chambers/Getty Images

Track and field star Sha'Carri Richardson was kicked off an American Airlines flight on Saturday morning after a heated exchange with a flight attendant that she captured on video.

Richardson posted two videos on her official Instagram of the situation. The first video begins as a recording of herself when a flight attendant appears to say something that isn't heard in the video.

"I'm recording me but you jumped in my video, so I caught you, because you jumped in my video," Richardson says to the flight attendant in the video. "You're harassing me at this point, so I think you should stop. I think you should stop."

In a second video on her Instagram, Richardson is seen telling someone the flight attendant should have been kicked off the plane when another passenger is heard saying to her he has to get off the plane because he's going to miss his connecting flight.

"Oh, so you're worried about a connection when a grown man is disrespecting me?" Richardson replied.

"I don't give a s--t," the passenger answered back.

In the caption with the second video, Richardson asks if she would "be wrong to pursue legal actions" against American Airlines.

Other flight attendants came along to let Richardson know the captain asked that she be removed from the plane.

Richardson continued to engage members of the flight crew and passengers about the situation. She eventually got off the plane after a few minutes, prompting a sarcastic applause from some of the passengers.

In the first video, Richardson said she was going on vacation before a flight attendant interrupts her recording.

Richardson, 22, rose to prominence as a freshman at LSU in 2019. She set an NCAA record in the 100 meters at the outdoor national championships with a time of 10.75 seconds.

Two years later, Richardson qualified for the Tokyo Olympics by winning the U.S. Olympic Trials with a 10.86-second run in the finals of the women's 100 meters. She was retroactively disqualified after her drug test on the day of the event came back positive for THC, and Richardson later accepted a one-month suspension from the United States Anti-Doping Agency.

Richardson came up short in her final attempt to qualify for the 2020 Olympics when she finished fifth in the 100 meters in the first round at the U.S. Track and Field Championships.

She also wasn't selected to compete with the women's team in the 4x100-meter relay competition in Tokyo.

Richardson returned to competition in August 2021 at the Prefontaine Classic. She finished last in the 100 meters.