Family of LAX shooting suspect ‘shocked and numbed’ by rampage
The family of the suspect in Friday’s shooting at Los Angeles International Airport said in a statement Monday that “we, like most Americans, are shocked and numbed by the tragic events.”
The statement was delivered on live television by John Jordan, who identified himself as the attorney for Paul Ciancia, the 23-year-old man accused of opening fire at LAX, killing a Transportation Security Administration agent. Federal prosecutors charged him with murder on Saturday.
In the interest of getting as many answers as possible about the shooting, the family said that they have “fully coooperated with the FBI and other law enforcement agencies.”
Much of the statement addressed the death of Gerardo I. Hernandez, the 39-year-old TSA screener killed during the rampage at LAX.
The family said they had “deep and sincere sympathy” for the Hernandez family and said “our hearts go out to his family and many others who grieve his passing.”
They also said they hope those who were wounded in the shooting will experience quick and full recoveries and apologized to the throngs of passengers inconvenienced by the mayhem.
Despite the shooting, the family said that “Paul is our son and brother, we will continue to love and care for him.”
Ciancia -- an unemployed motorcycle mechanic -- remained heavily sedated in a hospital after he was wounded by LAX police as he shot his way through Terminal 3 shortly after 9 a.m. Friday, authorities said. Ciancia was shot four times in the head and a leg, the Associated Press reported.
Ciancia, who remains under 24-hour guard, was carrying a signed, handwritten note in his duffel bag that said he wanted to “instill fear into their traitorous minds,” said David Bowdich, special agent in charge of the Counterterrorism Division in the FBI‘s Los Angeles office.
The semiautomatic rifle used in the shooting was purchased at a Van Nuys gun store and could fit into the bag the gunman brought to the airport, a federal law enforcement source told The Times.
The source said the weapon was a Smith and Wesson M&P 15, caliber .556, which was purchased at the Target Range Gun Store, 16140 Cohasset St., Van Nuys.
The source said the weapon is “collapsible” to be assembled later. But it could “easily fit ready to fire” into the luggage bag the alleged shooter brought into the airport, added the source, who spoke on condition of anonymity because the case is ongoing.
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