Passenger removed from plane in Sioux Falls

An odd thing happened Sunday morning on an airline flight from Sioux Falls to Minneapolis.

Delta Flight 3653, operated by Pinnacle Airlines Corp., was supposed to depart for Minneapolis at 9 a.m. when it was required to return to the gate.

According to Minnehaha County Sheriff Mike Milstead, who did some checking on the incident, someone on the flight apparently believed they saw a passenger who was wanted by law enforcement officials.

“Our people didn’t get sent on that call, but the way I understand it, it was someone on the plane that they thought was a wanted person from seeing a picture somewhere,” Milstead said. “I believe someone from the airport had them deplane, and they checked on them and it wasn’t the person who was wanted.”

Though he can’t confirm the exact circumstances, Milstead believes the passenger was allowed to take a later flight to the Twin Cities.

Officials with the Sioux Falls Police Department said they sent officers to the airport, but that they weren’t involved in removing anyone from the plane.

Joe Williams, director of corporate communications for Pinnacle Airlines Corp., said in an email that “I can confirm that Flight 3653, operated by Pinnacle Airlines, returned to the gate at (Sioux Falls) this morning and that a passenger was removed.”

Beyond that, he referred any other questions to Milstead’s office or to local police

Flight 3653 was about a half hour late in leaving and arrived in Minneapolis about 15 minutes late.