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American Airlines flight forced to divert to Raleigh due to "unruly" passenger

An American Airlines flight from Jacksonville, Florida, to Washington, D.C., was forced to divert to Raleigh, North Carolina, due to a passenger that apparently tried to breach the cockpit.

American Eagle flight 3444 was diverted "due to a security concern involving an unruly customer," the airline said in a statement.

Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg tweeted Wednesday night that he had been briefed on the "flight diversion due to a Level 4 disruption on board." According to Federal Aviation Administration documents, a Level 4 disruption constitutes "attempted or actual breach of the flight deck."

The FAA noted in a tweet that it is working to finalize a rule that would "require new planes to have a second barrier to the flight deck."

The passenger was removed from the flight by local law enforcement at Raleigh-Durham International Airport, the airline said. According to the airport, the Embraer E170 landed at around 3:40 p.m. ET.  After the passenger was taken into custody, the plane was cleared to continue its flight to Washington, D.C.

The FBI's Charlotte field office responded to the incident, the bureau said in a statement. "The FBI is currently conducting interviews to gather the facts and will consult with the U.S. Attorney's Office of the Eastern District of North Carolina to determine if federal charges will be filed," the FBI said.

The FAA said it was also investigating the incident.

— Katie Krupnik and Jeff Pegues contributed reporting.

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