Campbellsville University students safe after implant scare diverts flight


by WHAS11

Posted on May 22, 2012 at 11:51 PM

Updated Wednesday, May 23 at 3:00 PM

(WHAS11) -- Several students from Campbellsville University are safe at home after their plane was diverted on a return flight from Paris.

The students were on their way back from a trip to Africa, heading from Paris to Charlotte, when their plane had to make an emergency landing in Maine.

Authorities say a 40-year-old French woman on board the flight gave a flight attendant a note saying she’d had a device surgically implanted in her. While sources say the note never mentioned a bomb, last summer U.S. authorities warned airlines that terrorists might start surgically hiding bombs inside humans to evade airport security.

The students on board the flight say they had no idea what was happening, and thought they were just stopping to get fuel.

“We just assumed it was a routine fuel stop,” said student Adam Tucker.  Along with him on the flight was Megan Parson, who saw the woman but was unaware of the threat.

“When I turned around and looked, she was holding her head and the doctors were trying to look at her head,” said Parson. “I don’t know what was going on there. I just thought she was sick.”

Both students say the pilot finally broke the news to the passengers once the woman was removed from the plane. Then they brought the buses around and escorted the passengers off so they could search the entire plane.

179 passengers and nine crew members had to leave the plane while law enforcement inspected it. Sources say the woman was on a 10 day trip to the United States alone, and she didn’t check any baggage.

The doctor found no evidence of recent scars. The note itself did not mention a bomb.

Two F-15 fighters escorted the flight to Bangor International Airport. The woman is reportedly in FBI custody.