Identity of Suspicious Person Who Prompted Panic at LAX Unclear - NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth
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Identity of Suspicious Person Who Prompted Panic at LAX Unclear

Two JetBlue flights were delayed while a bomb squad inspected a plane and police searched for a man dressed as a pilot

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    Questions linger about a security scare that drew a bomb squad to Los Angeles International Airport on Thursday.

    Airport police said that around 6 a.m., an airport employee spotted a suspicious man trying to board a plane in the Terminal 3, Gate 31B jet bridge, a secured ramp passengers use to get from the terminal gate to the parked plane.

    JetBlue Flight 24 was scheduled to depart the gate at 6:30 a.m. for New York's John F. Kennedy International Airport. There were no passengers or crew on board when the man was spotted on the bridge, LAX officials said.

    The flight was delayed and the plane was moved to the airfield's west end for inspection by the bomb squad. After four hours, the plane was cleared for takeoff to New York.

    Airport police originally said they determined the suspicious man was likely an off-duty pilot who was trying to catch the flight to New York — and was no threat.

    But the FBI said Thursday night they questioned the pilot after he took a different plane to New York and determined he was not the man spotted on the jet bridge.

    The FBI believes the suspicious person was  an airport employee, but they still haven’t identified him.

    "We have mitigated all immediate security concerns as it pertains to this incident," LAX said in a statement. "Although we have strong reason to believe the subject was an airline employee, we continue to investigate the circumstances surrounding this incident."