The man who sparked a partial evacuation of LaGuardia Airport on Saturday after allegedly claiming to have a bomb in his bag now says that he was just making a "joke."
— NBC New York (@NBCNewYork) October 15, 2017
According to NBC, suspect John Park was at the Spirit Airlines ticket counter when he became angry over a $50 baggage fee. After he reportedly claimed that his bag contained a bomb, concourses A and B were evacuated, and briefly plunged into chaos.
— Valerie Ponzio (@valerieponzio) October 14, 2017
But on Sunday, Park maintained that it was all a misunderstanding. "They just overreacted," he told NBC. "I'm Asian, have a different culture—making jokes here and there. But they overreacted. That's all."
Following the incident, Park was taken into custody by Port Authority police and charged with making a terroristic threat,. The NYPD's bomb squad checked out the bag and found it to be clear of any explosives.
This is actually not the first time that Spirit's fee-mongering policies have prompted empty threats of terrorism at LaGuardia—back in 2012, a Spirit passenger allegedly said he'd "blow up the plane" because of the airline's baggage fees, leading to a long, though not unusual, delay.