Closings and delays due to Michael

NC NAACP president removed from flight

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Rev. William Barber, NC-NAACP

Rev. William Barber, NC-NAACP

WASHINGTON — The North Carolina NAACP president was removed from a flight in Washington, D.C., Friday night, according to WTVD.

It happened just after 10 p.m. at Ronald Reagan National Airport.

According to Rev. William Barber, his American Airlines flight to Raleigh-Durham International was scheduled to take off at 10:20 p.m. An airline spokesperson told WTVD that prior to takeoff, the captain called for the flight to return to the gate due to a disruptive passenger.

The so-called disruptive passenger, later identified as Barber, was escorted off the plane at the gate.

“I was in D.C. returning from preaching at a national ecumenical multi-racial gathering of faith leaders dealing with racism, voting rights and poverty,” Barber told WTVD. “It happened before the plane left the gate.”

Barber said it is still unclear why he was asked to de-board.

“I chose to abide by the request without challenge and to address later the issues interpretations around what precipitated it, as well as my response and my treatment,” he said. “I have turned this over to my counsel who have advised me, as is protocol, to speak with them first before any other statements are made. My prayer as always is fairness.”

He added that the staff at Reagan helped him get onto another flight on the same airline.

The airline would not say whether the incident was verbal or physical.