The stepmother of actress Lindsay Lohan has been charged in federal court with simple assault on an aircraft, a misdemeanor, for the allegedly intoxicated antics that forced a cross-country JetBlue flight to divert to New Orleans the day before Thanksgiving.
U.S. Attorney Kenneth Polite’s office charged Kate Lohan, 33, on April 14 in a bill of information, often a signal of a pending guilty plea. The charge carries a maximum six-month sentence.
The estranged wife of Michael Lohan, the actress’s father, was in seat 12F on Flight 101, bound for Los Angeles from Florida on Nov. 25, when Kate Lohan “immediately became disruptive” after being asked to bring her seat back forward as the plane taxied for takeoff, FBI Special Agent Crystal Bender wrote in an affidavit backing a criminal complaint.
A flight attendant cautioned her, but at 10,000 feet, a neighboring passenger began repeatedly pressing the flight-attendant call button.
“A witness advised that Lohan appeared to be intoxicated or possibly under the influence of an unknown substance. Lohan called the witness’ wife a ‘bitch’ and stated that she would ‘slit her throat,’ ” the affidavit states.
After other passengers also complained, the captain moved Kate Lohan to first class, to keep an eye on her through closed-circuit TV from the cockpit. She requested a glass of wine, which the flight attendant refused, Bender wrote, then started cursing and took photographs and videos of the flight attendant.
“Lohan then threw her cellular telephone at the flight attendant,” Bender wrote. “The cellular telephone hit the aircraft wall but ricocheted and hit the flight attendant. Lohan also threatened to stab the flight attendant.”
Lohan then got up from her seat and headed for the flight attendant before another passenger “made her sit back down,” the affidavit states.
That’s when the captain diverted the flight to Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport. FBI agents and Jefferson Parish Sheriff’s Office deputies arrested Lohan after the landing. Flight 101 continued on without her, arriving in Los Angeles an hour and 14 minutes late.
Lohan initially was charged with a federal count of interfering with flight crew members and attendants, which carries a maximum 20-year prison sentence, and was released under condition that she check into rehab in San Clemente, California, court records show.
Her attorney, public defender Gary Schwabe Jr., did not immediately return a call for comment on Tuesday.
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