Miami-Dade County

Man with knife shot by police at Miami International Airport

Police-involved scene at Miami International Airport

Concourse J at Miami International Airport was evacuated and police were seen surrounding an airplane at Gate J7 on the tarmac.
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Concourse J at Miami International Airport was evacuated and police were seen surrounding an airplane at Gate J7 on the tarmac.

A man with a knife was shot by a Miami-Dade County police officer at Miami International Airport late Thursday after he somehow got onto the tarmac, entered a secured room and then got into a confrontation with an officer, according to police.

The man was taken by Miami-Dade Fire Rescue to Jackson Ryder Trauma Center and was in stable condition, said Juan Perez, police director. The officer was not injured.

At least one shot was fired around 8:40 p.m. in Concourse J, which houses international flights.

Perez said it was not clear whether the man, who was not identified, went through a TSA checkpoint, but somehow “breached” a restricted area and made his way onto the tarmac.

“We got reports that the man was acting erratically,” Perez said.

When officers arrived, Perez said the man “fled into a room” before trying to get back into the main airport area through the ceiling. There was a confrontation, and an officer opened fire.

Perez said it appeared the incident was isolated.

“We do not suspect that there’s other individuals in the airport who are here to cause any harm and right now the situation has been neutralized so there is no danger to the patrons of the airport,” he said.

The shooting happened in an area where only one plane was scheduled to depart. That flight was delayed, Perez said, and those in the area were evacuated. Other flights were not delayed.

“A security incident led to a police-involved shooting,” Miami-Dade police spokesman Alvaro Zabaleta. “Everything is under control now and there’s no threat.”

The Florida Department of Law Enforcement will now investigate.

Many passengers who were in the airport trying to escape from Hurricane Irma weren’t even aware that anything had happened.

According to Twitter user @ShawnWoodford, Concourse J was evacuated and police were seen surrounding an airplane at Gate J7 on the tarmac. Passengers were moved to Concourse H.

The shooting created commotion at a place that already has been hectic because of Hurricane Irma. By Thursday afternoon, almost 100 flights had been canceled in anticipation of the monster storm.

Miami Herald Staff Writer Chuck Rabin contributed to this report.

Monique O. Madan: 305-376-2108, @MoniqueOMadan

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