Police in Los Angeles were tipped off that there might be a problem with the man who shot and killed a TSA agent at Los Angeles International Airport last week, but arrived at his house too late to intercept him. According to reports given by U.S. Rep. Michael McCaul, who serves on the House Homeland Security Committee, the shooter's father called police after the family received a disturbing text message last Friday. The call was relayed from police in New Jersey, where the father lives, to Los Angeles, where local police were sent to Paul Ciancia's home to check on him. Unfortunately, they arrived about 45 minutes after Ciancia had already left to carry out his deadly assault.
Ciancia reportedly got a ride to the airport from his roommate, who was unaware of the killer's plans. Ciancia shot five people, including TSA agent Gerardo Hernandez, who died of his wounds. The killer remains in the hospital in critical condition, after being shot several times by police. A note carried by Ciancia indicates that he deliberately targeted TSA agents, because he distrusted the government and wanted to "instill fear into their traitorous minds."
Homeland Security officials say they are reviewing TSA procedures and screening rules to see if any changes might made to prevent a similar incident from happening again. TSA officers are the only federal law enforcement officials who are not armed and do not receive firearms training, although armed police officers and security guards are usually present at most airports.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.