A Delta Air Lines story hit the headlines Friday after a flight from Seattle to Beijing had to turn around. While yesterday it was reported the cockpit door was his target, it seems the unruly passenger was trying to open an exit door on the plane when he assaulted a cabin crew member and a passenger. 23-year-old Joseph Daniel Hudek appeared in a U.S. District Court in Seattle Friday and is now facing federal charges for assaulting a flight attendant on the Delta flight.

Disturbance on Delta flight 129 to Beijing

According to Perry Cooper, a spokesman for Seattle-Tacoma International Airport, it was around 45 minutes into the flight when a disturbance occurred in the first class cabin of Delta Air Lines flight 129.

Hudek, who was reportedly traveling in first class on a “dependent pass,” assaulted a flight attendant, while attempting to open the exit door. KIRO 7 reports that Hudek’s mother is employed by Delta.

According to KIRO 7's report, Hudek had requested a beer from a flight attendant prior to take off, which he received and consumed. According to court documents, he ordered no further alcoholic drinks on the flight and did not appear intoxicated. However, around 45 minutes into the flight to Beijing, Hudek visited the plane’s bathroom on two occasions. When exiting the bathroom the second time, he suddenly lunged towards an exit door on the plane and attempted to open it.

Man strikes passenger with a wine bottle

As Hudek tried to open the door, a cabin crew member requested assistance from passengers seated in that area of the plane and notified the cockpit of the incident.

The pilot immediately called in the incident and the flight was turned around to return to the Seattle airport. While the flight attendant struggled with Hudek, the Florida man punched the cabin crew member twice. As reported by ABC News, he also struck at least one passenger, who was attempting to help the flight attendant, over the head with a wine bottle.

Flight attendant hits Hudek with two wine bottles

According to witnesses on the flight, Hudek continued in his attempts to open the plane’s exit door, while punching a passenger who was trying to pull him away. As the battle continued between Hudek and the passenger, a member of the cabin crew hit Hudek over the head with two wine bottles, breaking one of the bottles in the process.

According to one of the unnamed Delta passengers assisting the flight attendant, as they broke the two wine bottles over Hudek’s head, he tried to choke the unruly passenger, but he threw him off “like a rag doll.” According to court documents, after being struck with a wine bottle, Hudek shouted something like, “Do you know who I am?”

Several passengers and flight attendants eventually restrained Hudek in a headlock, subduing him long enough to secure him with zip ties.

On landing at Seattle-Tacoma airport, Hudek continued to struggle and several passengers were needed to restrain him.

Delta cabin crew member says it was possible for Hudek to open the door

According to several witnesses on the plane, it was terrifying to see the force Hudek was using while attempting to open the plane's exit door. He had reportedly managed to push the emergency lever halfway up before being subdued. According to one member of the cabin crew, as the plane was flying at a low altitude, it would have been possible for Hudek to open that door.

On arrival back at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport at 7:10 p.m., officers took Hudek into custody, while he continued to struggle and was combative.

He was then zip-tied to a wheelchair and placed in handcuffs as the officers took him out of the terminal.

One passenger and a flight attendant were transported to a Seattle hospital for treatment to injuries sustained during the incident. The flight took off from Seattle to Beijing later that evening.