2 Passengers Took Down Allegedly Drunk, Violent Man on Flight: Witness

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Two American passengers aboard an international flight into LAX helped “take down” an allegedly drunk, belligerent passenger who punched a flight attendant, one of the men said Tuesday.


Edgar Nonga is seen being escorted after a flight on Feb. 23, 2014, in a still from a YouTube video. (Credit: Brae Wyckoff)

Brae Wyckoff said he was on board Philippine Airlines flight 112 from Manila to Los Angeles over the weekend when a 53-year-old Lakewood man became confrontational and violent after being denied additional alcoholic beverages.

The FBI on Monday announced that a federal charge of interference with a flight crew — which carries a maximum prison sentence of 20 years — was filed against Edgar Nafarrette Nonga after multiple midair confrontations on the flight.

Nonga was taken into custody once FBI agents and police boarded the plane after it landed at Los Angeles International Airport on Sunday — a moment caught on video by Wyckoff.

The video showed Nonga being taken off the plane, FBI spokeswoman Laura Eimiller confirmed.

During the flight, Nonga had tried to grab the phone from a male flight attendant who was calling the captain, said Wyckoff, who described being in the area with another passenger — a large man whom he knew only as “Bill.”

Nonga became violent with the flight attendant, prompting Wyckoff and “Bill” to take action, Wyckoff said.

“Then (Nonga) started doing these fake punches. He came in with a full punch, and the guy stepped away from it, and it missed him – barely,” said Wyckoff. “At that point … we went and grabbed him.

“(Bill) went for the body; I grabbed the arms. And we just yanked him away, and we said, ‘Sir, you’re going down to the ground. We’re going to take you down, you need to go down to the ground,'” Wyckoff recounted.

Nonga was restrained and placed in flex-cuffs by the flight crew, with the help from at least five fellow passengers, according to an FBI news release issued Monday.

Federal agents would not comment on individual witness accounts or evidence posted online, Eimiller said when asked about Wyckoff’s video, which was posted to YouTube.

Wyckoff, a Vista resident who works in San Juan Capistrano, was on the flight with his wife Jill. They were coming back from a missionary trip to the Philippines, Wyckoff said.

Nonga bailed out of federal custody after being granted $10,000 bail at a hearing in U.S. District Court Monday.

KTLA’s Chip Yost contributed to this article.