DALLAS (NYTIMES) - A 37-year-old woman was taken into custody Monday (July 25) after she fired several rounds inside Dallas Love Field Airport in Texas before she was shot and injured by a police officer, authorities said.
No other injuries were reported, police said, but the shooting sent travellers scrambling for cover and delayed several flights.
The woman, who was not identified, was dropped off at the airport just before 11am, went to a ticket counter and then appeared to change her clothes in a restroom before emerging and opening fire inside the airport, Dallas Police Chief Eddie Garcia said at a news conference Monday afternoon.
A Dallas police officer inside the airport shot her, striking her "in the lower extremities," and she was arrested and taken to a hospital, Garcia said. Her condition was not immediately clear Monday afternoon. It was unclear at whom or what the woman was aiming when she fired. Garcia said the officer fired several rounds at her after she began shooting.
The shooting comes after a series of high-profile shootings in public spaces, including at a grocery store in New York in May, an elementary school in Texas in May and a Fourth of July celebration in Illinois.
Lanasha Darnell, 43, of Forney, Texas, who has worked at the airport since 2020, said she saw people running through the terminal. "We have drills on evacuation and where we're supposed to go to, but in the middle of it, that's all out the window," Darnell said.
Travellers scrambled into shops and restaurants, hiding in kitchens and behind furniture. Joe Castronovo III, who had flown from Orlando, Florida, on business, said he stepped off the Jetway and into the terminal and "saw people running" as travellers tried to find cover.
Castronovo's father, Joe Castronovo Jr, arrived at the terminal to pick up his son as the chaotic scene was unfolding. "I pulled up and saw a woman screaming and running away from the building," said the elder Castronovo, of Highland Park, Texas.
"We got scared something was wrong. Workers were coming out and telling people to hide."
Chief Max Geron of the Police Department in Rockwall, Texas, east of Dallas, said on Twitter that he was evacuated from Love Field "after an apparent shooting."
"Family is safe," he said. "TSA did a great job."
Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg said on Twitter that his office was closely monitoring the situation. "Thankful to all first responders on-site working to ensure travellers' safety," Buttigieg said.
The Transportation Security Administration was working to get travellers through security after the shooting and did not have an estimate for how long that would take, Patricia Mancha, a TSA spokesperson, said in a statement.
More than 60 flights at Love Field were delayed after the shooting, according to FlightAware, a flight-tracking website. Love Field Airport said in a statement that the shooting had prompted an evacuation and a shelter-in-place order while police responded.
The airport said on Twitter that its flight operations were suspended while the Dallas Police Department investigated.
"Passengers should refrain from coming to Dallas Love Field," the statement from the airport said. It also instructed people to "check directly with their airline for the latest updates on their flight status."
Southwest Airlines, which is based in Dallas and operates flights out of Love Field, said on Twitter that it was "aware of law enforcement activity at Dallas Love Field."
"We've paused departures and arrivals as we wait for additional information from authorities," the airline said. "There's no greater priority for us than the safety of our employees and customers. We appreciate your patience."