Demetrio said the American Airlines situation featured an "out-of-control" flight attendant, a "haggard mother" weary from travel, a passenger who wanted to protect the woman, and a captain who was out of the cockpit trying to deal with the uproar. The lawyer identified the woman as a school teacher from Argentina who was traveling with her two children.
The Association of Professional Flight Attendants, in a statement to media outlets, asked the public to withhold judgment of the American flight attendant involved.
The American incident came was less than two weeks after video of the United fiasco sparked national outrage over the way Dao was forcibly removed by airport police after he refused to give up his seat from an overbooked flight. At a news conference on April 13, Demetrio said there will "probably" be a lawsuit.
"United at the end of the day is totally responsible" after Dao was hauled off the plane "like a sack of potatoes," Demetrio told CNBC on Monday. However, he said he was encouraged by the airline's reassurances to no longer use police officers to "take off nonviolent, nonterrorist-type people — passengers like all of us."
United is conducting a review of the Dao fiasco, saying policy changes were set to be announced on April 30.
The videos are "a microcosmic of what's wrong with the airline industry today," said Demetrio. "We're helpless. We get to that airport. We're going through lines. We're going through metal detectors. We're just doing what we're told. And a lot of time it's in a rude manner. It's a bullying that takes place. And it culminated in Dr. Dao's physical situation."
The attorney said if these confrontations were not recorded there wouldn't be a discussion about the problem. He said Dao wants his case to help other passengers avoid what he went through.