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An AirTran Airways flight headed from Atlanta to San Francisco International Airport today was diverted to Colorado Springs Municipal Airport because of reports of an unruly passenger onboard the plane, an airline spokeswoman said.

AirTran Airways Flight 39 took off this morning and was headed to San Francisco but had to land in Colorado Springs, Colo., because of a man who appeared to be intoxicated, according to airline spokeswoman Cynthia Tinsley-Douglas.

During the flight, the man became disruptive and irate with a flight attendant before locking himself in a lavatory, according to AirTran officials.

Passengers described the suspect as appearing to be intoxicated, but it has not been confirmed if he was under the influence of drugs or alcohol, Tinsley-Douglas said.

Out of caution, the captain of the plane decided to land at the nearest airport, which was in Colorado Springs. The plane was escorted by two F-16 fighter jets from the North American Aerospace Defense Command Region, and landed in Colorado Springs at 10:55 a.m. PST.

Law enforcement officials on the ground detained the man, and the plane was cleared to continue flying to San Francisco. The plane is scheduled to land shortly after 5 p.m. at SFO.

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  • Greg Dewar

    This dude needs some serious punishment for all the trouble he caused. At the very least, he should be forced to stand at airport security with a sign around his neck saying “don’t be a dingus like me and get drunk and cause shit on an airplane, because you risk getting killed, or at the very least, ending up like me, a total loser sitting here watching you go through security.”

    Or something.