Man Dressed as Zorro Detained at LAX Airport in 'Active Shooter' False Alarm That Causes Evacuation
The costumed man said he had no idea of the chaos going on inside the airport when police approached him
A man dressed as Zorro allegedly wielding a plastic sword sparked reports of an “active shooter” at Los Angeles International Airport on Sunday night, PEOPLE confirms.
According to a tweet from Andy Neiman, Commanding Officer of LAPD Media Relations, loud noises confused for gunfire caused part of LAX to temporarily be evacuated and shut down. However, no shots were fired.
According to the airport’s Twitter page, airport police detained the suspect, who according to police wore an all-black outfit. Police have not released the suspect’s name.
The man dressed as Zorro had no idea of the chaos occurring inside the airport when he was detained, ABC 7 reports.
“They turned me over, put handcuffs on me and then told me what was going on…they searched me,” he said. “What happened was somebody called and said there’s a man in dark clothing out here. They got scared, I guess. But I’m sitting here calling for transportation.”
The man was later released.
“They explained to me that crazy stuff happens in the airports,” he said.
Passengers inside the affected terminals were evacuated and asked to wait on the tarmac, in parking garages or other locations.
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NBC Nightly News anchor Lester Holt was at the airport during the false alarm.
“Arriving at LAX off flight when people started pouring out of term 4 onto Tarmac,” he wrote on Twitter. “Security said “shots fired. Run!” Now in vehicle on taxiwy.”
Holt also said a witness said she heard “pops” in one of the terminals.
According to LAX’s Twitter, the situation was under control within a few hours. Passengers were rescreened and let back into the terminals.