Esteban Santiago, 26, of Anchorage, Alaska, has been identified as the gunman who opened fire at Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport today.
Broward County Commissioner Chip LaMarca wrote on Facebook that Santiago landed at the airport after a flight. Santiago checked a handgun in his luggage and retrieved it at the Terminal 2 baggage claim, LaMaca wrote, adding that he loaded the gun in a bathroom then came out and opened fire. NBC News, citing law enforcement officials, confirmed LaMarca’s story.
Santiago was taken alive into custody. Five people were killed and eight people were wounded by Santiago, according to the Broward County Sheriff’s Department.
Santiago was born in New Jersey, according to NBC News, and was a member of the U.S. Army National Guard. ABC News reports Santiago joined the National Guard in early 2016 and was honorably discharged approximately four months ago.
Santiago had lived in Anchorage since 2014, according to Alaskan court records. Those records show a criminal record there for minor traffic infractions including operating a vehicle without insurance and a broken taillight. Records also show his landlord evicted him for non-payment of rent in February 2015.
In January 2016, Santiago was charged with two misdemeanor crimes: one count of fourth-degree assault and another for damage of property over $50. According to a spokesperson from the Anchorage Police department the incident was related to domestic violence.
The case was resolved in March when Santiago entered into a deferred prosecution agreement, an alternative to adjudication where a state prosecutor dismissed the charges in exchange for Esteban’s completion of requirements that are unknown.
The Daily Beast / The Washington Post