Paul Ciancia of NJ identified as LAX shooter

Paul Ciancia, accused LAX shooter.

Paul Ciancia, accused LAX shooter.

PENNSVILLE — Authorities said a man with a rifle entered Los Angeles International Airport and fatally shot a Transportation Security Administration officer.

The gunman, identified by the FBI as 23-year-old Paul Anthony Ciancia, entered Terminal 3 on Friday and pulled a rifle from his bag, killing Garardo Hernandez. According to the TSA workers union and federal sources, Hernandez was working as a travel document checker.

Ciancia lives in Los Angeles, but he has family in New Jersey.

Authorities in Pennsville, New Jersey, said Ciancia’s father contacted them after he learned of a text message sent by Ciancia to his younger brother on Friday.  The exact details of the text message is not known, but authorities said it was alarming enough to suggest Ciancia wanted to hurt himself.

“Basically, the text message was just a message to the little brother and the way it was written, they had some concern about it,” said Pennsville Police Chief Allen Cummings.

Pennsville authorities contacted the Los Angeles Police Department, who then went to Ciancia’s apartment. Authorities found Ciancia’s roommates, but they said they hadn’t seen him since the night before and that he “was fine.”

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