Canadian suspect charged as FBI investigate terrorism in Michigan airport attack

FBI calls Michigan airport stabbing ‘act of terrorism’, alleged attacker is Canadian
Amor Ftouhi, a Canadian citizen, has been arrested for allegedly stabbing a police officer in the neck at a Michigan airport.

A Canadian has been charged with violence at an international airport following an attack on a police officer in Flint, Michigan.

The suspect was named as Amor Ftouhi, who is from from Quebec and holds a Canadian passport, according to the FBI.

READ MORE: What we know about the Flint airport attack and its Canadian suspect

FBI special investigator David Gelios says Ftouhi entered the U.S. on June 16 and arrived at the Bishop International Airport in Flint, Mich., Wednesday morning. He said other charges may be laid as the investigation continues.

He was described as middle-aged, but there were conflicting reports on his age; an FBI spokesman said he was 50 years old, but a news release said he was 49 according to the Canadian Press.

According to TVA, an apartment building in Montreal was raided late Wednesday afternoon in relation to the investigation. Neighbours in the area told Global News a man named Amor Ftouhi, along with his wife and two kids, lived in the building. At least one person was seen being escorted away by police.

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WATCH: Montreal apartment raided after police name Quebec suspect in Bishop Airport attack

The attack is considered an “isolated incident,” the FBI said in a statement, with no ongoing threat to the local community. The incident is being investigated as a potential act of terrorism.

Investigators said Ftouhi spent “some time” in an airport restaurant before heading into a bathroom, where he dropped his bags. He then left the bathroom and shouted “Allahu Akbar” before stabbing the officer.

A spokesperson for Public Safety Canada said Minister Ralph Goodale has spoken with the RCMP Commissioner and the National Security and Intelligence Advisor about the attack.

“There is complete co-operation between the RCMP and other Canadian authorities with their U.S. counterparts,” Andrew Gowing said in a statement. “The American authorities are leading the investigation, which is still in its early stages. Canada stands ready to assist in any way it can.”

The injured officer, initially in critical condition, has been upgraded to stable. He’s been identified as Jeff Neville, a retired lieutenant from the Genesee County Sheriff’s Office, according to local reports. Officials said his condition was “satisfactory.”

Neville is an employee of the Bishop Airport Public Safety, Michigan State Police Lt. Dave Kaiser said to WMEN.

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Jeff Neville has been identified as the Bishop Airport Public Safety officer who was attacked at the Michigan airport on Wednesday.
Jeff Neville has been identified as the Bishop Airport Public Safety officer who was attacked at the Michigan airport on Wednesday. Facebook - Jeff Neville

Bishop Airport was evacuated Wednesday after the attack. A witness said he saw an officer bleeding from his neck and a knife nearby on the ground.

The airport posted on Facebook that all passengers were safe. Citizens are asked to avoid the airport and surrounding area at this time.

READ MORE: Canadian coalition wants Ottawa to reduce security screening times at borders, airports

Ken Brown tells The Flint Journal he was dropping off his daughter at the airport and saw the officer bleeding from his neck. He says he saw a man detained by police and a knife on the ground.

“The cop was on his hands and knees bleeding from his neck,” Brown said. “I said they need to get him a towel.”

Cherie Carpenter, who was awaiting a flight to Texas to see her new grandchild, tells Flint TV station WJRT she saw the attacker being led away in handcuffs. She described the man in custody as appearing “blank, just totally blank.”

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Airport and police officials didn’t immediately respond to messages from The Associated Press seeking comment.

Flint is about 50 miles northwest of Detroit.

WATCH: An officer is in critical condition and one person is in custody Wednesday after a stabbing at Bishop International Airport in Flint, Michigan.
Aftermath aerial footage of stabbing a airport in Flint, Michigan
Aftermath aerial footage of stabbing a airport in Flint, Michigan