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‘Do you know who I am? I’m Chris Christie’s daughter and you’re so f–ked’: Shannon Epstein charged with felony over holiday arrest

By Jake Beardslee · December 6, 2023

In brief…

  • Shannon Epstein, niece of Chris Christie, charged with new felony for behavior during drunken airline incident
  • Allegedly disrupted Spirit Airlines flight by accusing family of smuggling drugs, fighting police
  • Screamed she was related to Christie and knew Trump during arrest
  • Faces up to 3 years in prison for violently resisting officers
The niece of former NJ governor Chris Christie is reportedly facing new felony charges for disruption of a Thanksgiving flight last year where she claimed political connections to officers arresting her.  Acroterion/Wikimedia

Shannon Epstein, the 26-year-old niece of former New Jersey governor and presidential hopeful Chris Christie, is facing new charges over a drunken incident last Thanksgiving that disrupted a Spirit Airlines flight out of New Orleans. Epstein was charged on Monday with one felony count of resisting arrest “by force or violence” and two misdemeanor counts of “disturbing the peace by public intoxication,” according to reporting by

The charges stem from an early-morning flight bound for Newark on November 24, 2022. While the plane was taxiing for takeoff, Epstein allegedly asked a nearby Latino family if they were “smuggling cocaine” before shouting expletives at police officers who came to escort her from the aircraft.

According to the police report, Epstein “was belligerent and displayed unusual strength” as officers tried to handcuff her. She briefly “broke free” and later “kick[ed], spit on deputies, and attempt[ed] to break free” after being wheelchair-bound, the report stated.

At one point during the struggle, Epstein invoked her political connections, allegedly telling officers: “Do you know who I am? I’m Chris Christie’s daughter and you’re so f–ked. You will lose your job over this s–t. I know Donald Trump.”

Epstein was originally arrested last November on multiple counts of battery against a police officer, disturbing the peace, and remaining in a restricted area. The latest charges are in addition to the existing ones she still faces.

If convicted of resisting arrest through violence or force, Epstein could face 1-3 years in prison under Louisiana state law.