Southwest Airlines pilot cited in California mask assault

A Southwest Airlines Co. Boeing 737 passenger jet pushes back from a gate at Midway International Airport (MDW) in Chicago, Illinois, U.S., on Monday, Oct. 11, 2021. Southwest Airlines Co. disruptions moved into a fourth day, with 355 canceled flight

A Southwest Airlines pilot is under investigation for allegedly assaulting a flight attendant at a California bar during an argument over wearing masks. 

USA Today says the pilot was cited for assault and battery over the Oct. 18 dispute at a hotel bar in San Jose. 

The Santa Clara County district attorney's office will determine whether to file criminal charges. 

The incident comes amid a surge in unruly airline passengers this year, who sometimes become violent

The FAA says airlines have reported thousands of cases of disruptive passengers, most of them involving passengers who refused to obey a federal requirement to wear a mask.

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