LOS ANGELES (CBSnewYork/AP) — A mystery person spotted Thursday on a passenger bridge at Los Angeles International Airport, prompting a search of a plane and a terminal, was likely an off-duty pilot scheduled to catch a courtesy flight to New York, authorities said.
The JetBlue aircraft was cleared for takeoff around 10:15 a.m. following the search ordered when an employee reported an unauthorized person dressed as a pilot, airport police Officer Rob Pedregon said. No travelers were on board at the time.
The flight was scheduled to depart at 6:30 a.m.
The off-duty pilot was scheduled to ride to JFK Airport on JetBlue Flight 24 but instead got on a Virgin American flight to New York, Pedregon said.
Authorities were waiting for confirmation from the off-duty pilot that he was on the passenger bridge at around 6 a.m., but officials were reasonably sure he was, Pedregon said.
The JetBlue plane was towed as a precautionary measure from Terminal 3 to a remote area of the airfield. Police searched the plane and terminal.
Flight 24 was scheduled for takeoff after the plane was cleared and all passengers and luggage went through security screening for a second time, Pedregon said.
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