A Bishop International Airport officer was stabbed earlier today, Wednesday, June 21, in an incident which officials fear may be terror-related. The lieutenant, who was stabbed in the neck, was taken to a Michigan hospital in critical condition but recent reports say he is now out of surgery and stable.
According to NBC News, the attack occurred outside of the TSA area, thus quelling concerns that suspect Amor M. Ftouhi managed to get a knife through security. The reason why terrorism is being considered as a motive in the Michigan airport officer stabbing lies with the man having yelled “Allahu akbar” before wounding Jeff Neville, who has worked at Bishop International since around 2000.
The Washington Post reveals that the man reportedly continued to shout “Allah!” as he kept stabbing the officer, going on to ramble various things regarding the current wars in places like Syria and Afghanistan. When subdued by another official, Ftouhi is said to have asked the officer why he had not been put to death for his actions immediately.
Although officials do not deny that terrorism is a possibility they are looking into, they do not want citizens of Flint, Michigan to panic as there is still the likelihood that this was an “isolated incident.” As reported by MLive.com, a statement was released by the FBI in which they confirmed that they had received knowledge of the attacker’s alleged words before he stabbed Neville, but that they were still waiting on confirmation before labeling terrorism as the true motive.
The suspect, who remains in custody as the investigation continues, is said to be from Quebec and is the holder of a Canadian passport. The 50-year-old reportedly entered the United States through New York on June 16, and made his way to Michigan from there. The Flint airport was closed after the attack, but re-opened after it was deemed there were no additional threats to the public or staff. The FBI will be working closely with Canadian authorities, as well as federal prosecutors, in order to make sure justice is fully served.
According to a witness, the officer’s wounds were severe. Ken Brown told reporters that the Michigan officer was “on his hands and knees bleeding from the neck.” He then saw a man being led away by police and a knife laying on the ground. K-9 units were then deployed in the airport parking lot, in order to search all vehicles for more potential evidence.
By Lorelai Zelmerlow
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