The United Airlines employee who allegedly pushed an elderly passenger to the ground in a fit of rage has now filed a lawsuit claiming that he is the real victim.
Former United Airlines employee Alejandro Anastasia became famous after his very first starring part in the latest viral passenger video. The footage which took social media by storm this summer blockbuster season, appears to capture images of the now-fired ticket agent shoving a 71-year-old grandfather to the ground.
The passenger, Ronald Tigner, is now suing the airline and two of its employees including Anastasia, but now, NBC News reports that the employee who had a leading role in the disturbing viral video has filed his own lawsuit. The worker whose termination came several weeks after the incident claims that the air lines and Tigner himself were responsible for the entire episode.
According to Tigner’s original lawsuit, the unprovoked assault stemmed from a simple request to have his boarding pass reprinted after being turned away from a security checkpoint because his ticket was illegible. The ensuing exchange reportedly left Tigner unconscious on the floor of the ticket area.
Anastasia, however, is seeking damages based on the claim that he was provided with inadequate training by the airline and an assertion that Tigner was the one who, in fact, instigated the altercation. According to Anastasia’s lawsuit, Tigner started the squabble by behaving aggressively, using profanity and racial slurs. The former air lines worker insists that the widely viewed footage of the fight fails to show that the elderly passenger started the altercation when he “got in my face” and “stepped on my toe.”
Anastasia told the court that he was simply trying to deescalate a tense situation when the passenger was injured. “I’m not going around pushing elderly people,” Anastasia insists in the recently filed legal papers.