Charity boss jailed after she and daughter started mid-air 'riot'

Charity boss, 57, is jailed for three months after she and her daughter, 35, started drunken mid-air ‘riot’ with 20 other passengers on easyJet flight from Manchester when cabin crew asked them to stop swearing

  • Karin Parkes and ex-civil servant daughter Carrie Parkes triggered a ‘full on fight’
  • EasyJet staff ‘lost control of cabin’ on Morocco-bound slight with 186 on board 
  • Karin convicted of assault and banned from going on easyJet flights ten years

A charity boss has been jailed for three months after she and her daughter started a mid-air ‘riot’ on board a passenger jet after being told off for drunkenly swearing as they were flying out on holiday to Morocco.

Karin Parkes, 57, and former civil servant Carrie Parkes, 35, triggered a ‘full on fight’ involving up to 20 men at 30,000 feet after they and friends were told off by cabin crew while drunk on wine and duty free pink gin.

Terrified staff on the easyJet flight, which had 186 passengers on board, had tried to calm the two women and asked them to behave but mother-of-two Carrie stuck her fingers in her ears and said: ‘I’m not listening to that vile c***.’

Karin Parkes, 57, (left) and former civil servant Carrie Parkes, 35, triggered a ‘full on fight’ involving up to 20 men at 30,000 feet. They are pictured outside Manchester Crown Court 

A cabin manager also urged the group to refrain from using bad language but was told: ‘You can f*** off you c***. Do what the f*** you want I’m not a****. we will see what happens.’ 

The captain of the aircraft, which was flying from Manchester to the Moroccan city of Agadir, had to divert to Casablanca after staff told him the rear of the cabin where the group were sitting was ‘out of control.’

During the mayhem, Karin Parkes – who is a manager for a charitable organisation which provides home care for the disabled – swung a punch at a steward while Carrie had to be forcibly held down by other passengers after she demanded to use the toilet when the plane was coming into land.

A virtually empty one litre bottle of Gordon’s Pink Gin and empty bottles of vodka were found near their seats. 

The pair, both from Blackpool, were later detained by police after being booed off of the plane by other passengers.

At Minshull Street Crown Court, Karin was convicted of assault and being drunk on aircraft and was also banned from easyJet flights for ten years. 

Carrie who was convicted of being drunk on an aircraft was given three months jail suspended for 12 months and was also issued with a ten year ban.

A third passenger Jonathan Thomas, 38, also from Blackpool, was given three months suspended for a year with an order to complete 150 hours unpaid work after he was convicted of being drunk on an aircraft. 

He was also banned from easyJet flights for ten years and ordered to pay £620 costs. 

Terrified staff on the easyJet flight, which had 186 passengers on board, had tried to calm the two women and asked them to behave but mother-of-two Carrie (left) stuck her fingers in her ears and said: ‘I’m not listening to that vile c***’

The incident on January 19 last year after flight EZ1905 took off at 3.30pm from Terminal One, Manchester. 

Originally Karin was supposed to be going with her partner, Thomas, and another a work colleague but Carrie joined them last minute after the colleague dropped out due to illness.

While waiting to board the daughter bought the pink gin in a duty free store before she and her mother later began consuming it at the rear of the aircraft and talking animatedly to a party of 14 men who were thought to be heading out on a ‘boys-only’ holiday.

Cabin manager Liam Dickson said: ‘There were people at the back being loud and using bad language.

‘ I addressed this an hour into the flight but as I turned away I heard abuse being thrown at me – I knew it was daughter’s voice because I had just been talking to her. 

‘I said there is no need to speak to me like that but she wasn’t interested – I could tell she had had a few drinks.’

At Minshull Street Crown Court, Karin (pictured) was convicted of assault and being drunk on aircraft and was also banned from easyJet flights for ten years

At things seemed fairly calm but the pair got ‘louder and louder’, Mr Dickinson said. 

‘Then the mother started coming towards me she was staggering towards me and again I could smell alcohol. 

‘Her words were ”You’ve got no duty of care for my daughter” and she did actually put her fists up towards me I managed to step back her knuckles did catch the right side of my jaw. She was very close. She was just out of control.

‘There were lads at this point who had jumped out of their seats and I didn’t know if they were coming to protect or attack us. I stepped back and there was quite a big passenger who had grabbed Karin by her arms and dragged her to the back galley.

A third passenger Jonathan Thomas, 38, also from Blackpool, was given three months suspended for a year with an order to complete 150 hours unpaid work

‘There was a lot of fists flying around with other passengers. It was as if there was a riot happening at the back of the cabin and there were at least 15-20 men stood up at this point and I was very concerned.

‘I actually went into the flight deck to tell them that the cabin was out of control and a full on fight was happening. ‘

Air stewardess Beth Halliwell said: ‘My colleagues were very shaken up like we had lost all control of the cabin. 

‘I have never been so scared in my life at work it was very intimidating it was just not a nice experience at all.’

Carrie claimed she had been drinking wine to calm herself when she she realised she did not have her medication for bipolar disorder. 

She told the hearing: ‘I was being extremely chatty and loud and my language isn’t the best. When I get excited I’m not aware of my surroundings my mum pulls me up on it be aware of other people.

‘I remember arguing but I have blackouts because of my medication. I have got a whole plane of passengers, 186 people, booing me and one of my triggers is rejection. I must have just lost it on that plane. 

‘I can’t remember anything until coming round in a third world hospital with my mum crying. I apologise for my behaviour but there is triggers and things I am now getting help for. I felt ashamed and humiliated.’

Karin accused cabin crew of ‘exaggerating’ the incident and told the hearing: ‘When we got on the plane there was no welcome on board or anything.   

Originally Karin (pictured) was supposed to be going to Morocco with her partner, Thomas, and another a work colleague but Carrie joined them last minute after the colleague dropped out due to illness

A lady in front of me turned round and said sarcastically: ‘they are a happy bunch aren’t they?’ – meaning the flight crew.

‘Carrie then started to get a bit anxious and went: ‘mum I haven’t got my medication.’ 

‘She was going a million miles an hour like when she’s moving from the baseline to crisis point. 

‘I was hushing Carrie telling her to calm down then something coming over the tannoy saying they are landing the plane because of all this and I was gobsmacked.

‘I stood up in her defence because she’s a vulnerable adult and I’m her mother. She didn’t say the C-word – I would be absolutely disgusted and Carrie knows that she wouldn’t use that word in front of me.’

Sentencing Judge John Edwards said: ‘This was an extremely challenging flight for the crew of the easyJet flight. 

‘I have seen footage from a mobile phone and it was a scene of chaos and yet the crew managers were professional throughout. They were able to quell what could have been a dangerous situation.

‘The captain said this was the worst incident he had ever had to deal with whilst passengers were unable to escape the utter misery of this ordeal. 

‘The experience of having a drunk person on an aircraft is deeply unpleasant, particularly on a flight such as this.’

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