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Arrest at LaGuardia Airport temporarily disrupts travel

NEW YORK (AP) — A 70-year-old passenger was arrested Saturday at LaGuardia Airport after authorities say he threatened a worker at the Spirit Airlines ticket counter, prompting a partial evacuation of the terminal and the summoning of explosives experts.

The police action shut down the ticketing area of the airport’s main terminal temporarily while the New York Police Department’s bomb squad responded to the scene and checked a bag. No explosives were found.

The man was identified as In John Park of Farmington, Michigan. It was not clear who would represent him at an initial court appearance in state court in Queens.

Joe Pentangelo, a spokesman with the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, said the threat was made by a passenger at about 7:15 a.m. in Terminal B. He said the airport was functioning normally about two hours later.

Port Authority police interviewed the man and charges were pending, Pentangelo said.

A New York police spokesman said the bomb squad was called to the airport at about 7:30 a.m. to check a bag.

As investigators did their work, LaGuardia Airport tried to keep travelers informed through a Twitter feed, saying in one that concourses A & B at Terminal B were not accessible and passengers should expect delays.

Stephen Schuler, a spokesman for Miramar, Florida-based Spirit Airlines Inc., referred a request for comment to police authorities.

The Port Authority operates New York’s three major airports, which include John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York and Newark International Airport in New Jersey.


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