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Friday, December 9, 2022

Woman Who Punched Southwest Airlines Flight Attendant Has Sentencing Delayed

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Because she was arrested for DUI and remains in detention, the woman who repeatedly hit a Southwest Airlines flight attendant in the face because she was asked to put on her seatbelt has had her sentence postponed.

During a Southwest aircraft from Sacramento to San Diego in May 2021, Vyvianna M. Quinonez, 28, punched the flight attendant. Three of the flight attendant’s teeth were chipped, and two of them required crowns.

A cut behind her eye required stitches, and the flight attendant also had bruising around her left eye and a bruise in the shape of fingers on her right forearm.

Quinonez agreed to a plea deal with prosecutors in December and admitted to assaulting the flight attendant. She was scheduled to be sentenced later this month, but due to her most recent arrest, the judge was compelled to postpone the hearing until May.

The California Highway Patrol pulled Quinonez stopped in January after police noticed her driving recklessly and swerving around traffic. Quinonez was charged with driving under the influence, but she maintains her blood alcohol level was unnaturally high due to recent gastric band surgery.

CHP claimed she informed officers she had numerous beers after a dispute with her partner, according to her arrest report.

Quinonez later told pre-trial services that her doctor had advised her that drinking wine could cause her “blood alcohol content to rise unnaturally due to the small size of her stomach.”

In late January, a US District Court issued a warrant for Quinonez’s arrest after finding that she had violated the terms of her pre-sentencing release.

As a result, a court has been compelled to postpone her sentencing on the assault accusation while she fights the DUI charge. Quinonez’s sentencing date has been set for May 27.

Quinonez faced a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine for attacking the flight attendants, but prosecutors agreed to seek only four months in prison and six months of home detention.

 

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