The bizarre rampage happened onboard flight 488, which was scheduled to depart from Pan Pedro Sula airport in Honduras for Miami, Florida on 12 January.
However, the unidentified man’s actions meant the plane was delayed.
“A customer entered the open flight deck and caused damage to the aircraft. Crew members intervened and the individual was ultimately apprehended by local law enforcement,” American Airlines said in a statement.
The airline added that it thanked the flight crew for “their professionalism in handling a difficult situation”.
A replacement aircraft was deployed and the flight was expected to take off at 9.30pm local time.
Transport reporter for ABC, Sam Sweeney, tweeted that: “During boarding, an American Airlines passenger charged down the jetway and onto the aircraft.
“The man entered the open cockpit and damaged the flight controls.
“A pilot in the cockpit tried to stop him and then the man tried to jump out the open cockpit window.”
A video shared on Twitter shows what appears to be a passenger attempting to climb out of the cockpit window of an American Airlines jet.
“The aircraft is damaged and remains at the gate,” added Mr Sweeney.
Other images shared online appeared to show the plane’s damaged controls.
No injuries were reported during the incident.
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