Man convicted of sexually assaulting sleeping nurse on flight to Atlanta

ATLANTA — Newly-released body camera video shows the moments a man was arrested for sexually assaulting an emergency room nurse on a flight from St. Louis to Atlanta.

A federal judge sentenced Scott Russell Granden, 36, to 21 months in prison Tuesday.

Prosecutors said Granden touched the nurse inappropriately on a Southwest Airlines flight in March of 2021. Granden is accused of touching her legs, groin and buttocks through her clothing repeatedly without her permission, prosecutors said.

At one point, Granden tried to kiss the nurse, according to prosecutors.

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“This was not an isolated incident,” an assistant U.S. attorney said. “He just continued over and over.”

Channel 2′s Mark Winne has obtained body camera video of Granden’s arrest the moment he got off the plane.

“Am I being detained or what?” Granden asks officers when they confront him.


A sentencing memorandum suggests that Granden started to yell vile and homophobic racial slurs at officers several times, pulled down his pants and yelled ‘Rape!’

The officers were able to remain professional.

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Granden is now going to have to register as a sex offender when he goes back to his home state of Missouri.

Because Granden’s crimes were committed on a plane they are considered federal and he won’t’ have the opportunity for parole.

U.S. Attorney Kurt Erskine said passengers have the right to fly in peace.

“Passengers have the right to fly in peace and to expect that their personal dignity will be respected,” Erskine. “When this defendant started groping and sexually harassing the female passenger in the next seat, he humiliated and degraded her. We will not tolerate this type of behavior on an airplane, and this sentence shows the consequences for such abusive sexual conduct.”

Philip Wislar, Acting Special Agent in Charge of FBI Atlanta said that reports of sexual assaults on planes are increasing, and the public needs to know that these crimes are federal crimes with severe consequences.

“The FBI will continue to work with our partners to investigate and prosecute these crimes to keep the skies safe for everyone.”