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Man arrested after standoff at airport

Posted: Sunday, January 03, 2010

SEATTLE - Police at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport shuttled people away from the southernmost passenger screening area Friday night after a man claiming to have a gun barricaded himself inside a restroom.

The man was arrested following a two-and-a-half-hour standoff, after Port of Seattle Police persuaded him to leave the restroom on his own.

No flights were delayed, and no other airport operations were affected. The man was not actually carrying a weapon.

Police aren't sure what the man's motives were, but they said there was nothing to suggest the incident was an attempt at terrorism.

"He said something about being upset because he needed to fly somewhere but didn't have any money," said Sea-Tac spokeswoman Terri-Ann Betancourt.

The incident began about 5:15 p.m. PST when police received reports of an armed man in an airport bathroom. Coming little more than a week after a man attempted to detonate an explosive device on Christmas Day during a flight from Amsterdam to Detroit, police immediately routed passengers away from the airport's south check point.

The man was arrested about 7:50 p.m. PST.

"There was minimal impact at that time of night because most of our passengers were arrivals, not departures," said Sea-Tac spokesman Perry Cooper.



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