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Flint airport stabbing investigated as act of terrorism, FBI says

Michigan stabbing latest

The FBI is investigating a stabbing at the international airport in Flint, Michigan, as an act of terrorism, the FBI said. 

An airport police officer was stabbed in the neck in the public part of the main terminal at Bishop International Airport on Wednesday morning, CBS News has learned. The wound was superficial.

Michigan State Police Lt. Dave Kaiser confirmed to CBS News the victim has been identified as Jeff Neville, a retired lieutenant with the Genesee County Sheriff's Office. As of Wednesday evening, Neville was listed in satisfactory condition.

FBI's Detroit field director David Gelios said Amor Ftouhi, a Canadian national, had been charged with violence at an international airport. He will be arraigned in Detroit, Gelios said.

 Amor Ftouhi has been charged in the stabbing of an officer at the Flint airport, the FBI said.  Facebook

Ftouhi entered the U.S. legally through Lake Champlain on June 16, Gelios said, and made his way to Flint.

Ftouhi yelled "Allahu akbar" -- which mean "God is great" in Arabic -- before stabbing the officer in the neck, Gelios said. The knife was a 12-inch knife, with an 8-inch blade, Gelios added. After the stabbing, Ftouhi said something like "you have killed people in Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan" and "we are all going to die," Gelios said.

Gelios said they believed Ftouhi is a "lone wolf" attacker.

Flint Mayor Karen Weaver praised an "unsung hero" who witnessed the attack.

"Please keep the attacked officer in your thoughts & prayers," Gov. Rick Snyder said on Twitter.

Tim Wiley with the FBI's Detroit field office said earlier that they believed this to be an isolated incident.

The FBI doesn't have specific or credible information of a threat to the Flint community, Wiley said.

Michigan State Police Lt. Mike Shaw said nobody else was believed to have been involved.

Police officers gather at a terminal at Bishop International Airport June 21, 2017, in Flint, Michigan, after an airport police officer was stabbed.
Police officers gather at a terminal at Bishop International Airport June 21, 2017, in Flint, Michigan, after an airport police officer was stabbed. Dominic Adams/The Flint via AP

Officials posted on Facebook that the airport was evacuated after the incident. The post added that passengers were safe and were being told to check for flight delays or cancellations. The state police said on Twitter that the airport was closed.

Five flights were affected, said airport director Craig Williams.

A government source told CBS News authorities swept the airport with canine teams.

Officer stabbed at airport in Flint, Michigan

Ken Brown told The Flint Journal he was dropping off his daughter at the airport and saw the officer bleeding from his neck. He said 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."

CBS Saginaw affiliate WNEM-TV reports that the police chief has stationed officers around Flint City Hall until further notice.

"At this time we are taking extra precautions just to be safe," Mayor Karen Weaver said in a statement.

Flint is about 50 miles northwest of Detroit.