The man suspected in the fatal shooting of a Southwest Airlines employee at Oklahoma City's main airport on Tuesday was found dead inside a vehicle hours after flights were halted and a shelter in place order was issued, police said.
Oklahoma City police are investigating why a man waited to gun down an airline employee outside Will Rogers World Airport in a deadly ambush that forced hundreds of travelers to take shelter and prompted authorities to shut down the state’s busiest airport for hours. Later Tuesday, police discovered the suspected shooter dead from an apparently self-inflicted gunshot wound inside a pickup truck in a parking garage near where they believe he waited, watching airport employees come and go before shooting and killing Michael Winchester, 52, a Southwest Airlines employee. “We do believe this was a premeditated act against the victim,” said Oklahoma City Police Capt. Paco Balderrama. “This was not random, and obviously the investigation is ongoing.”
Here are the latest updates:
10:35 pm (IST)
Police say the man accused of fatally shooting an Oklahoma City airport employee used to work for Southwest Airlines and that the attack was likely in retaliation for circumstances that led to the attacker’s 2015 resignation.
Capt. Paco Balderrama identified the shooter as Lloyd Dean Buie, of Oklahoma City.
He says Buie resigned from Southwest Airlines in April 2015 and that investigators believe he shot and killed 52-year-old Michael Winchester on Tuesday in retaliation for circumstances that led to Buie leaving the job.
Balderrama says he doesn’t know what Buie did for Southwest or why he resigned. He says Winchester was not Buie’s immediate supervisor.
Buie was found dead of a self-inflicted gunshot wound shortly after Tuesday afternoon’s shooting.
7:10 pm (IST)
Flights are operating normally at Oklahoma City’s Will Rogers World Airport, where a Southwest Airlines employee was fatally shot Tuesday afternoon.
Airport spokeswoman Karen Carney says air traffic control implemented a ground stop after the shooting of 52-year-old Michael Winchester. The ground stop was lifted at about 6 p.m. Tuesday and flight operations resumed, though 25 flights were canceled because of the incident.
Fifteen of the canceled flights were operated by Southwest Airlines. The company’s CEO, Gary Kelly, said on Twitter that the airline ”will do everything we can to support Mike’s family.”
Oklahoma City police have not released the name of the suspected shooter, who was found dead inside a pickup truck from an apparently self-inflicted gunshot wound.
12:30 pm (IST)
Oklahoma City police investigators are trying to figure out why a man waited to gun down an airline employee outside Will Rogers World Airport in an ambush that prompted authorities to shut down the state’s busiest airport for hours.
Police Capt. Paco Balderrama says the suspected shooter was found dead inside a pickup truck on Tuesday from an apparently self-inflicted gunshot wound. They believe he watched airport employees come and go before shooting and killing 52-year-old Michael Winchester, a Southwest Airlines employee.
Balderrama said late Tuesday that investigators hadn’t positively identified the shooter, but that the man apparently knew Winchester’s schedule and routine and that the two men likely knew one another.
The 1 p.m. shooting set off a scramble at the airport, with police immediately closing the sprawling complex.