Jefferson Parish sheriff’s deputies had a battle on their hands on Thanksgiving Day at Louis Armstrong International Airport in New Orleans, Louisiana, when the niece of former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie attacked them after she was removed from a Spirit Airlines flight.
According to The Times-Picayune/The New Orleans Advocate, Shannon Epstein was set to fly out on Thanksgiving Day. At about 6:00 a.m., she boarded the flight and, before takeoff, asked a group of nearby Latino passengers if they were “smuggling cocaine.”
The flight had already taxied to the runway, Sheriff’s Office spokesman Capt. Jason Rivarde said. After Epstein made the cocaine remark, the plane was turned around.
The question sparked immediate controversy, and airline staff began removing her from the flight. That’s when the situation took a nasty turn.
As Epstein became increasingly angry, Jefferson Parish sheriff’s deputies were called to assist. Upon their arrival, Epstein reportedly refused to comply with their request that she exit the jet bridge.
It was at that moment that Epstein, officials said, became “extremely combative.”
Epstein fought the group of sheriff’s deputies who attempted to arrest her, injuring a total of six of them. She reportedly kicked one of the deputies in the groin and bit down on another’s arm, breaking the skin and drawing blood.
In addition to Epstein’s violent reaction in her encounter with police, she also attempted to use her uncle’s notoriety to dissuade the arresting officers from taking further action.
Epstein reportedly made clear to the deputies that she was the niece of the former 2016 Republican presidential candidate. She continued taunting them by announcing that her uncle was close with former President Donald Trump and that such powerful connections could cause the deputies to lose their jobs.
Ultimately, her words didn’t matter, and she was handcuffed to a wheelchair after the scuffle was contained.
Twitter users reacted to the story and questioned why there are virtually no images or footage of Epstein to speak of, other than a possible, unconfirmed Twitter profile.
“Photos, mug shots, and rap sheets of Chris Christie’s niece Shannon Epstein, please. No cellphone footages??? Will the charges of battery on six deputies stick?” one Twitter user wrote.
Photos, mug shots, and rap sheets of Chris Christie’s niece Shannon Epstein, please. No cellphone footages???
Will the charges of battery on six deputies stick?
— Harriet Garner (@HarrietBGarner) December 4, 2022
The New York Post noted that Epstein was charged with “six counts of battery on a police officer, three counts of disturbing the peace, one of resisting arrest by force and one of remaining after forbidden.”
The former governor’s niece put up $10,750 in bail money to be released from the Jefferson Parish Correction Center later that evening. She faces a Jan. 23 court date, which The Times-Picayune/The New Orleans Advocate noted could eventually end up in federal court, as most airline-related cases do, according to Rivarde.
At the time of this writing, Jefferson Parish Police Department, Spirit Airlines and representatives for Christie have not commented on the situation, according to Business Insider.
There are also no previous reports of Epstein’s involvement with any of Christie’s campaigns.
This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.
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