LAX Shooter Details, Possible Motives Emerge
The LAX shooter claims he acted alone but that a friend drove him to the airport. Authorities say the suspect, 23-year-old Paul Ciancia, told police this after his arrest Friday. Further details have also been made public about a note found on the suspect’s person. The note suggests Ciancia intended to die or commit suicide after his rampage and mentioned the “New World Order,” a popular right-wing conspiracy theory.
The note also sheds light on the possible motives of the LAX shooter. Michael McCaul, the Republican congressman from Texas who serves as chairman of the US House Committee on Homeland Security says he has read the note, according to Chicago Tribune. McCaul says the note shows that the suspect allegedly planned to target Transportation Security Administration officers and avoid killing bystanders.
Suspect Paul Ciancia’s handwritten note, Representative McCaul says, shows the shooter’s unusual fixation on TSA agents. At one point the letter says of TSA agents, “If I just kill one, my mission is accomplished.” The LAX shooter’s bizarre letter also talks about how easy it was for him to get a gun and the weaknesses of airport security, according to sources at AP.
As Chicago Tribune describes, a note written by the suspect addressed to TSA agents said Ciancia would “instill fear in your traitorous minds.” Congressman McCaul says that it seems the LAX shooter wanted to prove how easy it would be to violate airport security.
McCaul says that Paul Ciancia’s relatives had called police the morning of the shooting. The LAX shooter’s father, a New Jersey resident, called local police after he learned that Ciancia had sent his brother an alarming text message that morning. Police in Los Angeles were notified, who went to the suspect’s home but did not find Ciancia. According to McCaul, the officers likely missed the suspect by a mere 45 minutes.
Suspected LAX shooter Paul Ciancia was arrested after an incident at the Los Angeles airport left one dead and five injured, including himself. 39-year-old TSA agent Gerardo Hernandez was shot to death, according to LA Times. Wielding an AR-15 semi-automatic rifle the gunman shot Hernandez at point-blank range then turned to leave, but came back and shot him again when he realized the TSA agent was not yet dead.
Beside the Smith & Wesson.223-caliber M&P-15 rifle Ciancia was found carrying five loaded magazines and extra ammunition in a bag. He was also arrested wearing a bulletproof vest.
The LAX shooter is presently being held at a local hospital, where authorities say he remains unresponsive.