Tara Reid Claims Delta Tried to Force Her to Put Dog in Overhead Bin, She Chose to Leave Flight
Tara Reid referenced Kokito the French bulldog, the 10-month-old dog who died in March on a United flight
The Sharknado actress, 42, was seen exiting Delta Flight 613 with her dog in one arm in footage obtained by TMZ. On Monday, Delta spokesman Ashton Kang told PEOPLE in a statement that the plane returned to the gate “due to a customer disturbance on board.”
In a statement shared on Instagram, Reid refuted that she had caused a disturbance. “I was taking a flight to [N.Y.C.] to shoot a movie. I had [pre-arranged] flight plans to bring my 3-month-old puppy dog with me which is my emotional support dog,” she started. “I had every right to bring my dog. I had doctor and veterinarian legitimate paperwork showing he could travel with me at the time of the flight in question which I showed to the Delta flight crew persons.”
A spokesperson for Delta tells PEOPLE that Reid’s claims are inconsistent with reports of the incident from several flight attendants and airline staff, and that the actress was disruptive and unruly.
The spokesperson also tells PEOPLE that an airline attendant would never recommend an animal be stowed in an overhead bin.
Reid then referenced Kokito the 10-month-old French bulldog who died in March after a United flight attendant demanded that the animal be stored in an overhead bin. The family reached a settlement with the airline in May, CNN reported.
The actress continued in her statement, “The flight attendant wanted me to put my dog in its carry on and in the overhead bin which was an absurd request considering animals cannot breathe in there, let alone an incident such as this one which took place some time ago and that puppy unfortunately died in that very similar overhead bin, therefore I refused to comply with this ridiculous request.”
“Then the flight attendant suggested that I put my puppy in the belly of the plane,” Reid continued. “I again refused another ridiculous suggestion, seemed to me there was no reasonable options offered to me at the time, what I knew for a fact is that I was not going to abandoned my dog. I gracefully declined and deboarded the plane on my own accord without any incident and as you can see in the video no disturbance took place.”
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According to Reid, she ended up reaching her destination. “Within minutes I was back on another plane with a different (Dog friendly) airline which accepted that I carry my dog on the plane with me on my lap heading to my destination,” she said. “I arrived safely to NYC.”
“They wouldn’t let the dog sit next to me, so I wasn’t going to stay on the plane,” she said. “Of course everyone made a big deal about it, but I’m kind of used to that in my life. They always kind of pick on me.”