NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) – Law enforcement officials on Friday identified Paul Anthony Ciancia, 23, of Pennsville, N.J., as the man believed to have opened fire at Los Angeles International Airport’s Terminal 3, fatally shooting a Transportation Security Administration agent and wounding two others.
CBS News’ John Miller said the suspect entered Terminal 3 wearing camouflage and opened fire around 9:20 a.m. local time. Five people, including the gunman, were taken to the hospital, police said.
This is the first time a TSA agent has been killed in the line of duty in its 12-year history, according to the union that represents TSA agents.
The TSA identified the agent killed in the shooting as Gerardo I. Hernandez, 39.
The suspect was carrying a bag containing a handwritten note that said he wanted to kill TSA employees and “pigs,” according to one of the officials, who was briefed at LAX on the investigation.
One eyewitness said the shooter was single-minded in his mission.
“He saw me cowering there. He had his gun and he looked at me and he said, ‘TSA?’ And I just shook my head and he kept going,” a man said.
Ciancia was shot four times in the mouth and leg and was listed in stable condition on arrival at the hospital, CBS 2’s Lou Young reported.
Officials said Friday evening that the shooting could have turned out much worse.
“There were more than 100 more rounds that could have literally killed everybody in that terminal today,” LA Mayor Eric Garcetti said.
Hernandez was a behavioral detection officer, said J. David Cox Sr., national president of the American Federation of Government Employees. Such officers are stationed throughout the airport, looking for suspicious behavior, he said.
As Young reported, the terminal was under full-scale evacuation after the gunman shot his way past a security checkpoint and kept shooting as he moved deeper into the terminal.