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Five dead in Fort Lauderdale airport shooting

A suspect is in custody after five people were killed and eight more were injured

Five dead in Fort Lauderdale airport shooting

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Five people were killed and eight wounded on Friday when a gunman opened fire at the airport in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, according to law enforcement officials.

Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel said the suspected shooter was unharmed and apprehended without police firing any shots. Israel said that as of about 3:30 p.m. local time, the scene at the airport was considered “fluid and active” and that SWAT personnel were still sweeping the area, but that police did not believe there was a second gunman.

Broward County Commissioner Chip LaMarca said on Facebook that the suspect “was a passenger on a Canadian flight with a checked gun.”

“He claimed his bag and took the gun from baggage and went into the bathroom to load it,” LaMarca wrote. “Came out shooting people in baggage claim.”

The sheriff’s office said on Twitter that shots were fired at the Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport at about 12:55 p.m. local time. The airport reported an “ongoing incident” near the Terminal 2 baggage claim.

The FAA said the airport, located about 25 miles north of Miami, will remain closed indefinitely while the shooting is investigated.

Multiple media outlets have cited unnamed law enforcement sources as saying the gunman is 26-year-old Esteban Santiago, believed to be a former U.S. Army soldier from New Jersey, but police have not yet confirmed these reports. Florida Sen. Bill Nelson also reportedly said the gunman was carrying a military ID with the name Esteban Santiago.

Mathieu Larocque, a spokesperson for the Canadian Air Transport Security Authority, told VICE News the agency is investigating reports that the gunman arrived in Florida on a flight from Canada.

“We are also looking into this situation,” Larocque said. “The only thing we could point out is that it’s not illegal to travel with a firearm if it’s registered” and goes through the proper legal channels.

News footage from the scene showed people on the tarmac outside the airport.

 

Former White House press secretary Ari Fleischer tweeted that he was at the Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport and that people were fleeing from gunshots.

In a subsequent tweet, Fleischer said the situation was calm, but police were not letting people back into the airport.

 

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