(CNN) — The man who attacked a security area at the New Orleans airport with a machete and wasp spray also had a bag of Molotov cocktails and a car containing smoke bombs and gas cylinders, authorities said.
The suspect, Richard White, 63, died Saturday after treatment for three bullet wounds he suffered when a sheriff’s lieutenant fired at him to halt the Friday night attack, the Jefferson Parish Sheriff’s Office said.
Sheriff Newell Normand said earlier that investigators hadn’t been able to talk to White, who officials said suffered from some type of mental illness. He said White’s wife and children had been very cooperative.
Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport was back open and fully operational, Mayor Mitch Landrieu said. He praised security officials for acting quickly and heroically and doing everything they could to stop the attack.
Agent told everyone to ‘run, run’
The incident began when White, carrying a bag, entered one of the lanes at the security checkpoint for Concourse B and began spraying Transportation Security Administration agents and bystanders with a can of wasp spray, the sheriff’s office said.
He then pulled a machete from his waistband and began swinging it at agents and others in the area.
“What I saw originally was one of the officers getting sprayed with the wasp spray,” said TSA agent Caroll Richel, whose arm was hit by one of the bullets fired at White.
The officer being sprayed with wasp spray picked up a bag and threw it at White to slow him down, but the suspect still barged through, Richel told reporters.
Richel, who was not armed, yelled for everyone to run as she made her way toward the sheriff’s lieutenant, who she knew had a weapon.
“I was calling, ‘Run, run’ for them to get away from him, and I was calling for the (lieutenant) so she was there and alert,” Richel said.
“I didn’t hear him say anything,” she said. “Once I yelled for the checkpoint to be cleared, I looked over my shoulder and he was coming after me. And I ran as fast as I could and thank God the officer was as close as she was, because I wouldn’t be here today.”
She said the man came “within inches” of whacking her with the machete. Read the rest of this entry »
BREAKING: Richard White, Machete-Wielding Suspect in New Orleans Airport Attack, was Carrying Bag with 6 Molotov CocktailsPosted: March 21, 2015
Man attacks TSA agents with a machete at New Orleans airport
The machete-wielding man who attacked two Transportation Security Agency workers at a New Orleans airport was carrying a bag holding six Molotov cocktails.
Officials said they don’t know what suspect Richard White intended to do with the homemade bombs or what triggered the incident.
“As you know this was unexpected incident involving a clearly troubled and disturbed individual,” said New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu at a Saturday afternoon press conference.
White, 62, chased the two Transportation Security Agency workers at New Orleans International Airport with a machete and wasp spray late Friday. He was shot multiple times by an officer, police said.
Officials said they noticed White had been carrying a bag when they checked surveillance video after the incident.
In the bag they found six half-pint mason jars with cloth wicks. The jars were filled with gasoline. The bag also held a barbecue lighter, Jefferson Parish Sheriff Newell Normand said.
Normand said as the bag was being checked other investigators from the Bomb Squad were combing through White’s car parked on the airport ramp. They found three tanks in the trunk holding acetone, Freon and oxygen.
White approached the airport security checkpoint Friday evening, pulled out a can of the insecticide and began spraying both agents and several passengers standing in line before he then drew a large machete from the waistband of his pants, Normand said.
The male officer grabbed some luggage to defend himself from the machete, and then was chased by White, Normand said. Read the rest of this entry »
KENNER, La. — A terminal at Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport was evacuated Friday night after a man with a machete attacked TSA agents and was shot by a police officer, according to the Jefferson Parish Sheriff’s Office.
The TSA said in a statement the incident took place at approximately 9 p.m., Central time Friday night.
“…A female Supervisory Transportation Security Officer (STSO) at Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport was assaulted in the public area outside of Checkpoint B,” the statement said. “The officer was taken to the hospital with non-life threatening injuries.”
Sheriff Newell Normand told CBS affiliate WWL-TV in New Orleans the suspect, whom he identified as 63-year-old Richard White, was taken to the hospital and was last reported as “unresponsive.”
Eyewitnesses told authorities White approached a TSA agent and sprayed that person in the face with wasp spray from a can. According to Normand, White got past the first agent and headed for the second TSA agent, again spraying wasp spray, before pulling out a machete and striking another agent, who grabbed a piece of luggage for protection.
Normand said the third TSA agent called a non-TSA officer for help, and as White continued to chase him, the officer showed up on the scene and fired three times, striking White. Read the rest of this entry »