Story Summary

Shooting at LAX

A TSA agent was fatally shot and several others were injured at Los Angeles International Airport on the morning of Nov. 1, 2013. Suspected gunman Paul Anthony Ciancia, 23, was charged in the shooting. He was critically wounded after being shot by LAX police.

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Several agencies came together Monday to review and improve security for airline passengers at Los Angeles International Airport.

The meeting comes in response to the deadly shooting of a Transportation Security Administration officer at LAX last November.

Officer Gerardo I. Hernandez was killed when a gunman opened fire inside terminal 3 on Nov. 1.

Paul Ciancia, the alleged shooter, has been accused of targeting TSA agents with a semiautomatic rifle and killing one officer.

Steve Kuzj reports from LAX for the KTLA 5 News at 1 on April 21, 2014.

More than four months after a shooting at Los Angeles International Airport left one TSA agent dead, others wounded and passengers terrified, a congressional hearing was held Friday to review recommendations for security improvements at LAX.

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An LAPD officer and her K-9 leave after making a sweep of the re-opened Terminal 3 on Nov. 2, 2013, a day after a shooting at Los Angeles International Airport. (Credit: Getty Images)

This week, the Transportation Security Administration called for increased police presence at airport checkpoints and ticket counters during peak travel times, as well as more active shooter training and other measures.

The agency’s review of the Nov. 1, 2013, shooting at Terminal 3, in which TSA agent Gerardo Hernandez was fatally shot, allegedly by gunman Paul Ciancia, was issued Wednesday.

Last week, a review of the shooting from LAX officials detailed communication lapses between public safety agencies and with the public.

The two reports were discussed at a 1 p.m. hearing at the airport held by the House Committee on Homeland Security’s transportation security subcommittee.

READ: LAWA Review: Active Shooting Incident and Resulting Airport Disruption

READ: Enhancing TSA Officer Safety and Security

Hernandez’s wife sat in the front row at the hearing, and lawmakers met privately with her.

Rep. Maxine Waters, whose district includes the airport, said communication flaws identified in the reports need to be fixed immediately.

“They have the money to do it. Resources are not a question. We expect them to be done yesterday, and we will be checking up on them,” Waters said outside the hearing.

The American Federation of Government Employees, the union that represents TSA officers and other federal employees, wants lawmakers to go further than the recommendations in the reports. It has advocated for a new unit of armed, uniformed officers within the TSA.

“We’re all in agreement that there needs to be law enforcement at every checkpoint … I think where we disagree is who should provide that law enforcement,” said J. David Cox, the union’s president, in an interview.

TSA Administrator John Pistole, Los Angeles World Airports Executive Director Gina Marie Lindsey and airport police Chief Patrick Gannon appeared before the subcommittee, as did Cox.

The hearing was intended to allow members of Congress to review the findings of the reports and “discuss potential changes to emergency response protocols at airports nationwide,” according to an advisory from subcommittee chairmen.

No action was taken.

KTLA’s Kacey Montoya contributed to this article.

The Transportation Security Administration is calling for an increased police presence at agency checkpoints after November’s deadly shooting at LAX, according to a report obtained Wednesday.

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Heightened security continued in the days after the Nov. 1, 2013, shooting at LAX, which left a TSA agent dead, and two other agents and a passenger wounded. (Credit: KTLA)

The agency’s assessment covers 14 recommendations relating to employee training, improved emergency technology and law enforcement presence that will be implemented at airports nationwide.

Read the full report: Enhancing TSA Officer Safety and Security

TSA Administrator John Pistole told The Times it was a “measured response” to the Nov. 1 attack at LAX in which one officer was killed and three other people were wounded.

“The bottom line of all this is … that we are doing everything we can to provide for the best possible safety and security,” Pistole said.

Click here to read the full story on LATimes.com.

An official report on the Nov. 1, 2013, shooting at LAX that left one transportation security agent dead that was released Tuesday praised first responders and criticized communications failures.

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Police respond to a fatal shooting in Terminal 3 at LAX on Friday, Nov. 1, 2013. (Credit: Leslie Rockitter)

The 99-page document was completed at the request of the Board of Airport Commissioners after Paul Ciancia allegedly opened fire inside Terminal 3 at Los Angeles International Airport.

The incident left Transportation Security Administration Officer Gerardo I. Hernandez dead, and two other agents wounded. A passenger was also wounded.

Ciancia was in custody about seven minutes after entering the terminal, according to the report. He was shot by responding police officers but recovered and was facing federal prosecution.

The airport was in chaos for hours, with more than 170,000 airline passengers affected, according to the report.

“The incident is not over,” Los Angeles World Airports Executive Director Gina Marie Lindsey wrote in a memo to the airport board at the beginning of the report.

The report noted a multiagency team response showed “courage, skill and professionalism” but stated a “continuing emphasis on incident command basics” was needed.

Emergency alert and warning systems at the airport need to be updated, the report said. It noted that emergency phones in terminals sometimes failed to indicate where in the airport calls where coming from.

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Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti discusses a report on the LAX shooting at a news conference at the airport on March 18, 2014. (Credit: KTLA)

At a news conference on the report Tuesday morning, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti praised a police response he called swift and heroic.

But he focused in part on shortcomings in the response — particularly in poor communication between multiple public safety agencies and to the public.

“The biggest failure was the lack of communication effectiveness,” Garcetti said. “It has to be analogue, it has to be digital. It has to be face to face, it has to be virtual. It has to be in every medium that we have.”

A centralized public address system for the airport was being developed, Garcetti said. Eleven emergency message signs on roadways have been installed that send messages directly to travelers’ cellphones, he said.

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The shooting took place at Terminal 3, next to the larger Tom Bradley International Terminal. (Credit: KTLA)

Phones and panic alarms in terminals now transmit location information to public safety dispatchers, Garcetti said.

He noted the struggle to get police agencies across the nation on shareable communication systems had been ongoing since 9/11. He called the local effort incredibly expensive and lack of progress frustrating.

“We got lucky that day. We’re lucky this shooting didn’t take more lives,” Garcetti said.

The report recommends the development of an “improvement plan” based on lessons learned from the incident, and the board’s president vowed to carefully review the analysis and implement changes “in a timely fashion.”

The airport board was expected to take up the report at a meeting later in the day.

A copy of the report is available at the LAWA website.

KTLA’s Kacey Montoya contributed to this article.

The 23-year-old suspect in a fatal LAX shooting spree that left international travel in chaos and passengers terrified pleaded not guilty to charges of murder and other crimes at a brief hearing Thursday at a Rancho Cucamonga jail.

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Shown in a courtroom artist’s sketch, Paul Ciancia appeared for arraignment at a Rancho Cucamonga jail on Dec. 26, 2013. (Credit: Bill Robles)

Paul Ciancia, accused of targeting TSA agents with a semiautomatic rifle and killing one officer, appeared at West Valley Detention Center, a San Bernardino County jail facility about 45 miles east of Los Angeles where he had been held since being released from the hospital last month.

Ciancia was indicted Dec. 17 by a federal grand jury on 11 counts: one count of premeditated murder of a federal officer, two counts of attempted murder of a federal officer, four counts of violence at an international airport, one count of use of a firearm causing death, and three counts of use of a firearm during a violent crime.

Ciancia entered his not guilty plea at Thursday’s 11 a.m. hearing, which latest just a few minutes. A trial date was scheduled for Feb. 11, with a status conference in downtown Los Angeles set fo Jan. 27, according to the pool reporter at the hearing.

No cameras were permitted inside the hearing room, but the handful of reporters who were allowed inside described Ciancia as slight. His defense attorneys said he was 5 foot 3 inches tall, weighing 110 pounds.

He spoke in a hoarse voice and repeatedly touched a new bandage around his neck.

At an initial appearance at the jail on Dec. 4, Ciancia was deemed a flight risk and a danger to the community by U.S. Magistrate Judge David T. Bristow. Ciancia, who at that time appeared to have marks and scars on his face and wore a bandage that looked like one given to tracheotomy patients, was ordered held.

Ciancia allegedly opened fire in Terminal 3 of Los Angeles International Airport on Nov. 1, killing Transportation Security Administration officer Gerardo I. Hernandez and injuring several others.

Hernandez was the first TSA officer to die in the line of duty since the agency was founded in the wake of the 9/11 terrorist attacks.

According to the indictment, Ciancia also allegedly shot at TSA officers Tony Leroy Grigsby and James Maurice Speer, as well as Brian Donovan Ludmer, a Calabasas teacher.

Ciancia was shot in the face by responding airport police and taken to the hospital in critical condition.

A New Jersey native who had been living in the L.A. neighborhood of Sun Valley, Ciancia was believed to have acted alone.

In the bag that held the firearm used in the attack, investigators found a hand-written note that described animosity toward the TSA and intent to “instill fear in your traitorous minds,” according to court documents.

If convicted, Ciancia faces either life in prison or the death penalty, if Attorney General Eric Holder decides to make the prosecution a capital case, according to Thom Mrozek, a spokesman for the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Central District of California.

The man accused in the fatal shooting rampage at Los Angeles International Airport was indicted by a federal grand jury Tuesday on 11 felony counts, including murder and attempted murder, prosecutors announced.

Paul Ciancia LAX Shooter Suspect

Suspected LAX shooter Paul Ciancia seen in a DMV photo provided by law enforcement sources via the Los Angeles Times.

Paul Anthony Ciancia, 23, was charged with the murder of Transportation Security Administration Officer Gerardo I. Hernandez and attempted murder of TSA Officers Tony Grigsby and James Speer, who were wounded in the Nov. 1 attack.

Ciancia, a New Jersey native living in Sun Valley at the time, faces two additional counts related to Hernandez’s death: knowingly using a semiautomatic rifle to murder and cause death, and committing violence at an international airport that resulted in death.

He faces three counts that he did “knowingly carry, brandish, discharge and use a firearm” when he allegedly shot Grigsby, Speer and Brian Ludmer, a Calabasas teacher who was also wounded. The final three counts are related to allegations that Ciancia used the Smith & Wesson M&P-15 to commit acts of violence at an international airport.

Click here to read the full story at LATimes.com.

The 23-year-old suspect in a fatal shooting spree at Los Angeles International Airport made his initial court appearance from a Rancho Cucamonga jail Wednesday morning and was ordered held without bail.

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Paul Ciancia seen in a courtroom artist’s sketch during a Dec. 4, 2013, hearing. (Credit: Bill Robles)

Paul Ciancia appeared at West Valley Detention Center, a San Bernardino County jail facility where he was being detained. No cameras were allowed inside the hearing.

Judge David T. Bristow granted federal prosecutors’ request that Ciancia remain in custody until trial, saying he was a flight risk and a danger to the community, according to Thom Mrozek, spokesman for the United States Attorney’s Office for the Central District of California.

Ciancia has been charged with the murder of a federal officer and the intentional use of a firearm during the commission of violence an international airport.

Shackled, handcuffed and speaking quietly in a hoarse voice, Ciancia appeared small and young to observers in the small concrete room in which the hearing was held.

In addition to having marks on his face, he wore a kind of bandage around his neck that looked like one given to tracheotomy patients.

He was not asked to enter a plea on Wednesday.

The appearance was Ciancia’s first since he allegedly opening fire at LAX on Nov. 1, killing Transportation Security Administration officer Gerardo  I. Hernandez and injuring several others.

Brisbow scheduled for a preliminary hearing for Dec. 18, which will take place unless Ciancia is indicted beforehand. An arraignment was set for Dec. 26.

Both hearings were set to take place in U.S. District Court in downtown Los Angeles, Mrozek said.

A case calendar for the courtroom had listed “hospital” and West Valley Detention Center under the Wednesday hearing, but Mrozek could not confirm if Ciancia was still in a medical center at the jail.

Ciancia allegedly pulled an assault rifle from a bag near the entrance to Terminal 3, shooting Hernandez at point-blank range, and then returning to fire on Hernandez again. Ciancia allegedly then fired on at least two other TSA employees and a civilian passenger as he proceeded through the TSA checkpoint and into the gate area.

He was shot by responding airport police and taken to the hospital in critical condition; court documents indicate he was shot in the face.

On Nov. 19, Ciancia was released from the hospital and taken into custody by the U.S. Marshals Service.

He was being held at the Rancho Cucamonga facility, about 45 miles east of Los Angeles, because the Marshals Service has a contract with the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department to hold federal prisoners at the jail there, according to Mrozek.

A New Jersey native who had been living in Sun Valley, Ciancia was believed to have acted alone, specifically targeting TSA employees in an incident that left LAX in chaos and disrupted air travel around the world.

The accused gunman in the fatal shooting spree at Los Angeles International Airport was scheduled to make an initial court appearance on Wednesday, federal prosecutors announced Monday.

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Suspected LAX shooter Paul Ciancia, seen in a DMV photo. (Credit: FBI)

Paul Ciancia was set to appear at West Valley Detention Center, a San Bernardino County jail facility in Rancho Cucamonga where he was being held, according to a spokesman for the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Central District of California.

The appearance was set to be Ciancia’s first since he allegedly opening fire at LAX on Nov. 1, killing Transportation Security Administration officer Gerardo  I. Hernandez and injuring several others.

The court hearing will be an arraignment, but Ciancia will not be asked to enter a plea, U.S. Attorney’s Office spokesman Thom Mrozek said in an email to news media.

“United States Magistrate Judge David T. Bristow will make sure that the defendant has been apprised of his rights, has seen the criminal complaint filed against him, and has an attorney,” Mrozek wrote, adding that the judge will likely set future court dates.

A case calendar for Bristow’s courtroom listed “hospital” and West Valley Detention Center under the hearing, but Mrozek could not confirm if Ciancia was still in a medical center at the jail.

Ciancia allegedly pulled an assault rifle from a bag near the entrance to Terminal 3, shooting Hernandez at point-blank range, and then returning to fire on Hernandez again. Ciancia allegedly then fired on at least two other TSA employees and a civilian passenger as he proceeded through the TSA checkpoint and into the gate area.

He was shot by responding airport police and taken to the hospital in critical condition. On Nov. 19, Ciancia was released from the hospital and taken into custody by the U.S. Marshals Service.

A New Jersey native who had been living in the Los Angeles neighborhood of Sun Valley, Ciancia was believed to have acted alone, specifically targeting TSA employees in an incident that left LAX in chaos and disrupted air travel around the world.

Ciancia has been charged with the murder of a federal officer and the intentional use of a firearm during the commission of violence an international airport.

Slain transportation security agent Gerardo I. Hernandez — killed by a gunman at LAX — was shot 12 times, according to a full autopsy report released Friday by the Los Angeles County Department of Coroner.

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A memorial ribbon and image worn at an LAX ceremony in honor of Gerardo Hernandez, who was killed when a gunman opened fire at the airport on Nov. 1, 2013. (Credit: pool)

Suspected gunman Paul Ciancia is accused of opening fire after pulling an assault rifle from a bag in Terminal 3 at Los Angeles International Airport on Nov. 1, apparently targeting TSA agents.

Ciancia, who has been charged with murder in Hernandez’s death, allegedly shot at the TSA agent and then began to ascend to the terminal’s second level. The gunman then turned around and returned to shoot at Hernandez again after the agent appeared to move, according to court documents.

On Wednesday, coroner’s officials said in an initial statement about Hernandez’s autopsy that he “died within two to five minutes of being shot” due to multiple gunshot wounds. His death was ruled a homicide, according to the one-page statement.

According to Friday’s coroner’s report, Hernandez was transported from LAX to Harbor-UCLA Medical Center near Torrance, where he arrived at 10:15 a.m. in full cardiac arrest.

“Despite life-saving efforts,” a doctor called Hernandez’s death at 11 a.m., two hours after the airport shooting began, according to the 22-page report.

An Associated Press report published Nov. 15 had raised questions about how long it had taken for Hernandez to receive medical attention after the shooting. Citing an unnamed source, the wire service reported that 33 minutes passed before Hernandez was brought to paramedics and that an unidentified Los Angeles Police Department officer told others Hernandez was already dead.

After the coroner announced that Hernandez died within minutes of being shot, LAPD Chief Charlie Beck called previous reporting of his officer’s actions “highly irresponsible.”

“All the facts indicate that any action taken by responding officers or medical personnel would not have saved Officer Hernandez’s life,” Beck said.

The final report released Friday described Hernandez’s gunshot wounds: one through the right arm and into the right side of his torso, six to his lower right back or buttock, four around his right rear hip, and one at his right front hip.

Hernandez’s heart was grazed and his intestinal tract has 16 perforating injuries, the report states. His spinal column was severed.

Forty bullet fragments were recovered from Hernandez’s body, the report states.

Hernandez was a 39-year-old veteran TSA agent who lived in Porter Ranch. He was married and had two children.

Two other TSA agents and an airline passenger were wounded in the shooting.

KTLA’s Kennedy Ryan contributed to this report.