Southern California breaking news and trends

Frightened elderly passenger forces L.A. flight down in Houston


Photo by Adam Fagen via Flickr Creative Commons

A Sunday flight from Los Angeles to Fort Lauderdale was forced to land in Houston when a customer began swinging at passengers.

86-years-old and partially-blind, the disruptive man aboard Spirit Airlines Flight 310 spoke only French and was traveling alone, said police spokesman Kese Smith. Smith said the man had become frightened.

Authorities found an interpreter and contacted the man's son, who flew to Houston and accompanied his father to Florida. Officials did not identify the men by name.

Passengers aboard Flight 310 were re-assigned to new flights that day. They will be refunded for the inconvenience, according to Spirit spokeswoman Misty Pinson.

At least one person took to Twitter to vent frustration at the airline and bring attention to the stranded passengers:


What Beverly Hills police are not saying about Whitney Houston

2009 AMA Awards Show

Matt Sayles/AP

Artist Whitney Houston performs onstage at the 37th Annual American Music Awards on Nov. 22, 2009 in Los Angeles.

At a press conference Monday morning, police talked about all the things they will not talk about regarding Whitney Houston, and confirmed few details in the investigation of her tragic death. 

Beverly Hills Police Department spokesman Lt. Mark Rosen said many rumors were circulating, but that he did not know where they were originating.

At this time, said Rosen, they are not conducting a homicide or criminal investigation, but noted they were not ruling out anything. 

He said authorities are proceeding with an active, sealed death investigation, calling it a coroner's case. Said Rosen, "We do not know the cause of death," asserting that the investigation is BHPD procedure based on Houston's age, not her "celebrity or notoriety."

He also confirmed she had been moved by the person or persons who found her, and not by Beverly Hilton hotel security or paramedics.


Whitney Houston autopsy: Preliminary results possibly out Wednesday

Speaking to reporters today, an L.A. coroner official said preliminary results of Whitney Houston's autopsy may be available on Wednesday. Officials indicated earlier that the full report, including toxicology tests, could take weeks. The coroner official also indicated that speculation on medication found on the scene did not come from the corner's office. Prescription pill bottles were found in her room, however. The coroner's office also earlier reported that Houston was found in a bathtub.

“I had a conversation with the family at the hotel and at no time did I discuss prescription meds or the drowning issue. I don’t know if detectives discussed that with the family. But no, we have not released any info like that," said Assistant Chief Coroner Ed Winter.



Al Sharpton on Whitney Houston: 'Don't remember the rumors. Remember the voice God gave this lady'

Obit Whitney Houston

Reed Saxon/AP

As members of the choir applaud, the Rev. Al Sharpton asks for a national day of prayer for Whitney Houston, during regular Sunday services at Second Baptist Church. Houston, who was 48, died Saturday in Beverly Hills.

Al Sharpton stepped to the podium at the Second Baptist Church of Los Angeles on Sunday to speak about Whitney Houston less than 24 hours after her death in a Beverly Hills hotel room on the eve of the Grammys. Sharpton, who is asking for a national day of prayer for Houston, dedicated the first 10 minutes of his 45-minute sermon to Houston.

He went on to implore the audience of about 200 to "Don't remember the rumors. Remember the voice God gave this lady and she gave that voice to the world."

She "was an international icon," he said. "Whatever she did was on the front page. Don't delve in the mess. All of us have some mess."


Police tell CBS Bobbi Kristina Brown 'expected to be OK'

Paramedics say they took Whitney Houston's daughter, Bobbi Kristina Brown, to a Los Angeles hospital Sunday morning for unspecified medical reasons.

The Beverly Hills Fire Department says Brown was taken from the Beverly Hills Hilton around 10:30 a.m. Sunday, less than a day after her mother died in a room at the same hotel.

CBS reported it was told by police that Brown is expected to be OK.

UPDATE 1:50 p.m.