Police shoots man at Dallas airport, causes lockdown and delays

Some services at the Love Field Airport in Dallas were called off after the shootout on June 10, 2016. Photograph:( AFP )

Reuters Dallas Jun 11, 2016, 05.37 AM (IST)
A policeman shot a man outside the Love Field airport in Dallas on Friday, after the man, with rocks in his hands, vandalized a woman's car and later threatened the police officer with a large rock. The incident prompted a temporary shutdown of parts of the facility, police said.

Dallas police in a written description of the incident said the suspect, whom they identified as Shawn Diamond, 29, the father of the woman's children, had told the officer, "You’re going to have to shoot me".

Diamond, who had a rock in each hand, later made a "quick approach directly at the officer" and the policeman fired his handgun, striking Diamond, the police description said.

When Diamond got up with a rock in one hand, the officer opened fire on him again, police said.

In a social media video played on several broadcasters, five shots could be heard, followed by a volley of several more. Shouts of "get down" were heard and an officer with a pistol could be seen.

Diamond was transported to a local hospital where he was listed in stable condition, police said.

Video images of the woman's car showed broken windows and numerous dents but police said she was not hurt. She had driven Diamond to the airport so he could fly home to the East Coast, police said.

Due to the disturbance, which occurred outside baggage claim, some people entered secure areas without proper screening, Dallas Assistant Police Chief Randy Blankenbaker told reporters.

"The airport decided to pull everyone back out of the secure area and recheck them for security purposes," he said.

This created massive lines and the incident led to problems with flight schedules at the airport where budget carrier Southwest Airlines Co. controls 18 of Love Field's 20 airport gates.

As of Friday afternoon, Love Field had the second-largest number of flights delayed of any US airport after Los Angeles International, at 50 or 14 per cent of its departures, according to flight tracking website FlightAware.com.

Southwest temporarily grounded its flights at the airport for about two hours, the Federal Aviation Administration said.

Bryan Armstrong, a witness, told CNN that the man who was shot had a rock in his hand and police ordered him to drop it as he walked toward them.

The officer who opened fire will be placed on administrative leave, under department policy for an investigation into the shooting, police said.