US prosecutors have filed a murder charge against the suspected gunman in the deadly shooting at Los Angeles International Airport, and he could face the death penalty.
Authorities arrested 23-year-old Paul Ciancia in Friday's attack, which also wounded five others, including two other federal security officers. Security officer Gerardo Hernandez was killed.
Ciancia was also charged with commission of violence at an international airport.
Ciancia was determined to lash out at the Transportation Security Administration, saying in a note that he wanted to kill at least one TSA officer and didn't care which one, authorities said.
It's not clear why Ciancia targeted the agency, but the note found in his bag suggested the unemployed motorcycle mechanic was willing to kill almost any airport security officer he could confront with his AR-15 semi-automatic rifle.
"Black, white, yellow, brown, I don't discriminate," the note read, according to a paraphrase by a law enforcement official briefed on the investigation. The official spoke on the condition of anonymity because he was not authorised to speak publicly.
The suspect's screed mentioned "fiat currency" and "NWO", possible references to the New World Order, a conspiracy theory that foresees a totalitarian one-world government. The note also said he wanted "to kill TSA and pigs".
Authorities believe someone dropped Ciancia off at the airport, and agents are reviewing surveillance tapes and other evidence to piece together the sequence of events.
Terminal 3, the area where the shooting happened, reopened on Saturday (today, NZT).
The TSA planned to review its security policies in the wake of the shooting. Administrator John Pistole did not say if that meant arming officers.
A few more details emerged about Ciancia, who was described as reserved and solitary.
Former classmates barely remember him, and even a recent roommate could say little about the young man who moved from New Jersey to Los Angeles less than two years ago.
"He kept to himself and ate lunch alone a lot," a former classmate, David Hamilton, told the Los Angeles Times. "I really don't remember any one person who was close to him .... In four years, I never heard a word out of his mouth."
Ciancia, who was shot four times by airport police, remained hospitalised on Saturday, but there was no word on his condition. He was wounded in the mouth and the leg, authorities said.
On Friday, Ciancia's father called police in New Jersey, worried about his son after the young man sent texts to his family that suggested he might be in trouble.
The call came too late. Ten minutes earlier, police said, Ciancia had walked into the airport, pulled the rifle from his bag and began firing.
When searched by police, Ciancia had five 30-round magazines, and the bag contained "hundreds of rounds in 20-round boxes," the law-enforcement official said.
Hernandez, 39, was the first TSA official in the agency's 12-year history to be killed in the line of duty.
Allen Cummings, police chief in Pennsville, a small working-class town near the Delaware River where Ciancia grew up, said he's known Ciancia's father - also named Paul - for more than 20 years.
He said the father called him around midday Friday to tell him about texts his family had received from his son in Los Angeles.
"There was some things in there that made his family feel he may do harm to himself," Cummings said. He did not mention suicide or hurting others.
Cummings said the father also heard from a friend that his son may have had a gun.
The chief said he called Los Angeles police, who sent a patrol car to Ciancia's apartment. There, two roommates said that they had seen him a day earlier and he had appeared to be fine.
By that time, shots were already breaking out at the airport.
"There's nothing we could do to stop him," Cummings said.
The attack at the nation's third-busiest airport halted caused hundreds of flight delays and cancellations nationwide.
Leon Saryan had just passed through security when he gunfire. He fled and as he was cowering in a corner, the shooter approached.
"He looked at me and asked, 'TSA?' I shook my head no, and he continued on down toward the gate. He had his gun at the ready and, but for the grace of God, I am here to tell about it," said Saryan.