News

Accused LAX gunman pleads not guilty

Accused LAX gunman pleads not guilty

NOT GUILTY PLEA: Paul Anthony Ciancia, 23, pleaded not guilty in the shooting of a TSA officer at LAX. Photo: Reuters/FBI

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) -Accused Los Angeles airport gunman Paul Anthony Ciancia pleaded not guilty on Thursday to all charges in an 11-count federal indictment against him.

Ciancia, 23, spoke softly in a federal court appearance at West Valley Detention Center in Rancho Cucamonga as he entered his plea to charges of murder of a federal officer and other counts in connection with the Nov. 1 shooting spree.

On Dec. 4, U.S. Magistrate Judge David Bristow ordered Ciancia held without bond after finding he posed a danger to the community and represented a potential flight risk. Ciancia did not enter a plea at that hearing.

Three charges in the 11-count indictment against Ciancia carry a maximum sentence of life in prison or the death penalty; federal prosecutors have not decided yet whether to seek capital punishment if Ciancia is convicted.

In addition to a single count of murder and two counts of attempted murder of federal officers, Ciancia was indicted on four counts of committing an act of violence at an international airport and four counts of firearms offenses.

Ciancia is accused of walking into Terminal 3 at the airport, removing a semi-automatic rifle from a bag and opening fire on an unarmed Transportation Security Administration officer standing at the entrance to a security checkpoint.

The TSA agent, Gerardo Hernandez, 39, was the first agent slain in the line of duty since the agency was created in the aftermath of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks.

Authorities say Ciancia then stalked past metal detectors through the checkpoint and into the airplane-boarding area, shooting and wounding two other TSA employees and a traveler before he was critically wounded in a gunfight with police at one of the world’s busiest airports.

Ciancia’s hearing will be held at the West Valley Detention Center in Rancho Cucamonga, located east of Los Angeles in San Bernardino County, because Ciancia is being treated for his injuries there.

(Reporting by Dana Feldman; Writing by Alex Dobuzinskis; Editing by Leslie Adler)

Recent Headlines

in Local

B’ham Hawk Fans to create giant lighted human 12

Fresh
Lights on a downtown Seattle building form a giant figure "12" in honor of Seattle Seahawks' fans and the team's success Wednesday, Jan. 8, 2014, in Seattle. The Russell Investments Center, at 1301 Second Ave., coordinated with building tenants to strategically close window blinds to light the number twelve, honoring the team's "12th Man," on the west-facing side of the 42-story building on Wednesday and will do so again on Friday. The Seahawks play the New Orleans Saints Saturday in an NFC divisional playoff game.

The Seattle Seahawks play in the super bowl Sunday… but Whatcom county 12’s are already showing their support.

in Local Sports

WWU women win on the road, men fall at home

Fresh
dom hunter 1-29

The WWU women were victorious on the road Thursday night, while the men couldn't finish a comeback at home

in Local

Dave Matthews raises 12th man flag on Seattle Space Needle

Fresh
Musician Dave Matthews, right, poses for photos with his wife, Ashley Harper, second from right, after Matthews raised the Seattle Seahawks 12th Man flag, Thursday, Jan. 29, 2015, on the roof of the Space Needle in Seattle. The Seahawks will face the New England Patriots in NFL football's Super Bowl XLIX on Sunday, Feb. 1, 2015, in Glendale, Ariz.

Musician and Seahawks fan Dave Matthews raised the 12th man flag Thursday on top of the Seattle Space Needle

in Local

Decision looms over captive orca, but fate of Lolita unclea

Fresh
whalejumping

For years, animal activists have campaigned to free a killer whale that was captured from Puget Sound waters in 1970.

in Local

House passes judicial review of mental health decisions

Fresh
A sidewalk outside the Legislative building is bustling with people on the first day of the 2014 session of the Washington state Legislature, Monday, Jan. 13, 2014, at the Capitol in Olympia, Wash.

The Washington state House unanimously passed a bill that will allow family members to ask a judge to review cases.