SALT LAKE CITY — A Lakewood, Colorado, woman faces a federal assault charge for allegedly beating her 8-year-old son on a JetBlue flight from Boston to Salt Lake City on Sunday.
Witnesses told authorities they saw a dozen incidences of Cherice Dawn Klipfel, 46, slapping, hitting and kicking her son and "aggressively" shoving him against the bulkhead or window, according to a criminal complaint filed in U.S. District Court.
"Each violent episode would be followed by a loving period where Klipfel would calm down and they would sit without a problem," court documents say.
The boy pleaded with her to stop and was crying the whole time, witnesses told investigators.
One witness was "adamant" that Klipfel's actions were "absolutely not parenting but abuse and assault." The witness said the woman used her boot to shove the boy against the window and grabbed him by the neck and shoved him against the wall or window, according to the complaint.
When the witness got up to tell a flight attendant, other passengers saw Klipfel put a coat tightly over the boy's head and "aggressively" shake him using the coat, court documents say.
Klipfel appeared in court Monday on a misdemeanor assault charge. Prosecutors are seeking a detention hearing.