| FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla.
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. Jan 7 Federal
investigators will on Saturday pursue all angles in determining
the motives behind a mass shooting in which an attacker opened
fire in a crowded baggage claim area at Fort Lauderdale's
airport, killing five people.
Authorities said they had taken decorated Iraq war veteran
Esteban Santiago into custody following the shooting and
questioned him at length. He was expected to face federal
charges, said George Piro, special agent in charge of the
Federal Bureau of Investigation's office in Miami.
Piro said FBI investigators had not ruled out terrorism as a
reason for the attack and were reviewing the suspect's recent
movements. "We will be pursuing every angle to try to determine
the motive behind this attack," he said.
Authorities said the attacker retrieved a 9mm semiautomatic
handgun from his checked luggage and began firing
In addition to the five killed, eight people were wounded by
gunfire and some three dozen were taken to hospital with bruises
or broken bones.
Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport is the
second largest in South Florida, serving as an intercontinental
It resumed cargo flights and general aviation for private
small planes at midnight local time. Commercial flights were to
resume on Saturday, the airport said on Twitter.
Authorities said Santiago, 26, arrived in Fort Lauderdale
shortly before 1 p.m. local time (1800 GMT) on Friday on a
connecting flight from Alaska.
Piro said Santiago had turned up at an FBI office in
Anchorage in November of last year behaving erratically and was
turned over to local police, who took him to a medical facility
for a mental health evaluation.
Santiago served from 2007 to 2016 in the Puerto Rico
National Guard and Alaska National Guard including a deployment
to Iraq from 2010 to 2011, according to the Pentagon.
A private first class and combat engineer, he received half
a dozen medals before being transferred to the inactive ready
reserve in August last year.
An aunt said he came back from his deployment "a different
person", MSNBC reported.
The attack was the latest in a series of mass shootings that
have plagued the United States in recent years, some inspired by
Islamist militants, others carried out by loners or the mentally
Nearly two months ago a former Southwest Airlines worker
killed an employee of the company at Oklahoma City's airport in
what police called a premeditated act.
The deadliest mass shooting in modern U.S. history took
place last June, when a gunman apparently inspired by Islamic
State killed 49 people and wounded 53 at a gay nightclub in
(Additional reporting by Brendan O'Brien in Milwaukee; editing
by John Stonestreet)