HOUSTON (FOX 26) - We first told you about Carmen Maria Montiel’s fateful flight from Houston to Colombia in the fall of 2015.
Montiel is a former Miss Venezuela, a finalist as Miss Universe and a TV anchor. Since she’s a public figure her 2013 United Airlines flight from Houston to Colombia made headlines.
“Beauty queen gets in drunken brawl over a pillow” the headlines screamed.
She says she can relate to Dr. David Dao who was forcibly removed from his United Airlines seat.
“For me it came very close to home and I know how Dr. Dao feels about the whole situation,” Montiel said. “ I will be forever traumatized.”
It was much more serious for Montiel. She ended up with federal charges of interfering with a flight attendant and faced up to 20 years in prison.
During a three day federal trial jurors heard how a United Airlines flight attendant decided to have two other passengers forcibly remove the former beauty queen from her first class seat to coach.
That happened, she says, after her ex-husband kept telling the flight attendant she was bothering him.
Testimony in the trial revealed the flight attendant decided on his own to have Montiel arrested without consulting the captain. A jury found her not guilty.
In a statement United Airlines told us,” As this is a matter of active litigation we are unable to comment any further.”
The trial is currently scheduled for September.