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Man charged with slapping baby on flight

10:00 Sun Feb 17 2013
By MSN NZ staff

A US businessman has been charged with assault by the FBI after he allegedly slapped a two-year-old boy on a flight and told the child's mother to shut the "n----- baby up".

Idaho resident Joe Rickey Hundley, 60, is accused of hitting 33-year-old Jessica Bennett's son, Jonah, on a flight to Atlanta on February 8, the Smoking Gun reports.

A witness said he saw Hundley, the president of an aviation parts company, hit the child after it became agitated by a change in altitude as the plane prepared to land.

"Ms Bennett stated that Joe Rickey Hundley then turned around and slapped (her son) in the face with an open hand."

Hundley has denied striking the boy but admitted asking the boy's mother to "quiet the child".

Ms Bennett said she believed Hundley was intoxicated on the flight, describing how the businessman "reeked of alcohol" and was "stumbling around wasted".

Hundley, who was travelling to a family funeral, said he was not drunk on the flight.

The Idaho resident faces a maximum sentence of one year in prison if convicted.

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