On Oct. 22, Mary MacCarthy booked a last-minute flight from Los Angeles to Denver because her brother had suddenly died the night before.
The single mom from Mar Vista would later find unfounded that Denver police investigated a report from Southwest Airlines that she was a suspected human trafficker and traveling not with her own, bi-racial 10-year-old daughter, Moira, but with a victim.
She says she believes it was a racially-motivated move by Southwest Airlines flight attendants.
“I was frankly very forthcoming with information,” she said. “I told them our names, why we were traveling, what I did for a living.”
Southwest Airlines said in a statement it is reviewing the situation and would be reaching out to MacCarthy to offer apologies.
“At this point they can speak with my attorneys,” MacCarthy said.
She says it’s about more than an apology.
“I travel with my daughter’s birth certificate because I’m ready to answer any questions if necessary,” she said. “The fact that we’re mother and daughter, the fact that I’m a single parent traveling with my daughter. It’s the right of TSA to ask those questions, I’m open to that. But the way this was handled was so unprofessional.
“I will do whatever it takes to speak out against the type of ignorant behavior and policies that lead to families being treated this way.”