One survivor of the Fort Lauderdale, Florida, airport shooting that killed five people and injured at least six others credits his backpack and laptop for his survival.
One survivor of the Fort Lauderdale, Florida, airport shooting that killed five people and injured at least six others credits his backpack and laptop for saving his life.
“The backpack saved my life,” Steve Frappier told Anderson Cooper on CNN. “[I] dropped and the backpack was still on my back and I was turned in such a way where that at one point when the shooter shot toward my direction … there was a bullet that ricocheted.”
Frappier went on to say that he was lying on the ground as the gunman shot in his direction. Describing his position “like a tortoise” with his backpack on, he added that one bullet went through a small opening in his bag, hit it laptop, and was found in the side pocket of his backpack.
“I felt something hit my back,” he said. “It was only later when I went to the bathroom to check myself out that the bullet had entered my backpack, hit my laptop and then later when I gave my backpack over to the FBI for investigation they found the bullet in the pocket of my backpack.”
“That’s incredible,” Cooper said. “So your laptop saved your life? The laptop stopped the bullet.”
“The way that it ricocheted and entered my bag. That would have been my back,” Frappier said. “It hit just so through the open backpack, exited, ran through the laptop and the casing and landed in an interior pocket of the backpack.”
Cooper then said, “Gosh you were lucky.”
The names of the five people killed are beginning to come out in the wake of the deadly incident.
The Broward County Sheriff confirmed the shooting, with multiple people dead and a subject in custody, just before 2 p.m. local time on Friday.
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A federal law enforcement official confirmed to PEOPLE that the suspect is Esteban Santiago, 26. The shooter was discharged from the National Guard last last year on a general discharge, the official says.
On Friday, Santiago arrived in Ft. Lauderdale on a Delta red-eye flight originating from Anchorage via Minneapolis. According to authorities, the shooter had checked a legal firearm in his luggage and retrieved it at the airport before opening fire inside the baggage claim area.
Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel said that Santiago was taken into custody without incident, and has been interviewed by FBI agents and Broward County sheriff’s deputies. He is expected to be in federal court on Monday.