Rochester, N.Y. – Rochester International Airport has been reopened to traffic after a bomb threat shut down the airport Saturday morning.
Monroe County Sheriff’s Office says around 6 a.m., 32-year-old Francesco Pagano of Cantina, Sicily approached the ticket counter and told an employee he had a bomb in his luggage. The ticket agent called authorities with the threat.
Airport officials, with assistance from the Monroe County Sheriff’s Department, Border Patrol and Transportation Security Administration, began working immediately to secure the airport. A K-9 bomb squad team screened 3 of the suspect’s bags on the scene.
All passengers on the JetBlue flight the man was boarding had to be taken off the plane and re-screened by airport security. Four additional flights were delayed as a result of the threat.
About 100 other travelers in the airport lobby who had not been through security yet were placed in a quarantine room while authorities secured the scene.
Pagano claims he was joking when he made the threat, but Airport Director Susan Walsh says the man’s demeanor led the ticket agent to believe he was serious.
Pagano is charged with falsely reporting an incident and could face additional charges pending an investigation by the FBI and TSA.Vodpod videos no longer available.