The United passenger who was dragged off a plane on Sunday has made a statement from his hospital bed in Chicago, Illinois.
“Everything is injured,” David Dao, 69, said when asked what was hurt, according to WLKY.
Dao was forcibly removed from Flight 3411 at Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport on Sunday. Video of his bloody face and the violent treatment he received has since gone viral, sparking an outcry across the country.
“The family of Dr. Dao wants the world to know that they are very appreciative of the outpouring of prayers, concern and support they have received. Currently, they are focused only on Dr. Dao’s medical care and treatment,” the family’s attorney Stephen Golan said in a subsequent statement.
Dao and his wife, who is also a physician, live in Elizabethtown, Kentucky, and he was attempting to fly back home to see to his patients.
After previously describing Dao as “belligerent” and “disruptive,” United CEO said in a statement Tuesday that “nobody should be treated this way.”
“I want you to know that we take full responsibility and we will work to make it right,” Oscar Munoz said.
Details emerging of Dao’s past — which the security officials involved with his removal from the plane could not have known — triggered a social media backlash earlier on Tuesday.
According to Louisville, Kentucky’s Courier-Journal, Dao went to medical school in Vietnam in the 1970s before moving to the U.S., where he started working as a pulmonologist in Elizabethtown.
In 2003, he was arrested and eventually convicted of prescription drug-related charges, according to the Courier-Journal. He was also convicted of several felony charges of obtaining prescription painkillers by fraud or deceit in November 2004 and was placed on five years of supervised probation in January 2005, surrendering his medical license the next month. He was, however, permitted to resume practicing in 2015 under certain conditions.
Video of the now-infamous removal from a United flight shows security agents dragging the screaming passenger from his seat as other passengers look on in shock. In a statement, United tried to stress that the men who dragged the passenger did not work for United.
The Chicago Department of Aviation said an officer had been placed on leave and that the dragging “was not in accordance with our standard operating procedure.”