U.S. authorities have launched a terrorism investigation after Canadian Amor Ftouhi allegedly stabbed a police officer in the neck at an airport in Michigan Wednesday.
Ftouhi, 49, was arrested shortly after the attack at Bishop International Airport in Flint and charged with violence at an international airport. Officials believe the he acted alone and was not part of a “wider plot.”
“At this time we view him as a lone-wolf attacker,” FBI Special Agent in Charge David Gelio said. “We have no information to suggest any training.”
According to a criminal complaint, Ftouhi allegedly stabbed airport cop Lt. Jeff Neville with a large knife after yelling “Allahu akbar,” the Arabic phrase for “God is great.” According to the FBI, Ftouhi said something similar to “you have killed people in Syria, Iraq, and Afghanistan, and we are all going to die.” Neville was able to fend off his attacker, and is recovering in hospital following surgery.
According to the FBI, Ftouhi, a Montreal native, entered the U.S. five days before the attack. He arrived at the airport at 8:52 a.m. Wednesday with two bags, according to the FBI complaint filed with the Michigan District Court.
He then went up to the second floor restaurant and spent around 30 minutes there before abandoning his bags in a restroom. Just before 10 a.m., Ftouhi allegedly stabbed the officer.
According to French language television TVA, Ftouhi’s Montreal apparent was raided following his arrest.
Ftouhi’s longtime Montreal landlord said he was not a difficult tenant.
“I never had any problems with him,” Luciano Piazza told the Canadian Press. “I’m really surprised. I would see him at least once a month, when he paid his rent.”
A man claiming to be Ftouhi’s friend told the Canadian Press he had met Ftouhi while he was a teacher in Tunisia and has known him for 20 years.
“He’s a socially positive person,” Kamel Yahyaoui said. “He’s looking for a good life for him and his family. That’s all.”
The FBI have yet to say what they believe a motive is behind the attack. However, Gelio suggested the man had a “hatred for the United States and a variety of other things.”
Ftouhi is expected to face more charges Thursday.
WATCH: According to TVA, an apartment building in Montreal was raided late Wednesday afternoon in relation to the Flint Airport investigation.
–with files from Rebecca Joseph and The Associated Press