The FBI has taken over the investigation of the stabbing of a Flint Michigan police officer at the city’s Bishop Airport. The attack has been labeled as a ‘probable act of terror,’ according to reports in local media. Witnesses say that a man, later identified as a Canadian, repeatedly stabbed the officer while shouting “Allahu Akbar” earlier today. The Islamic saying means ‘God is great’ in Arabic, it is frequently used by Muslims terrorists during or prior to attacks and suicide bombings on innocent civilians.
A police spokesperson identified the injured officer as Lieutenant Jeff Neville, who is a retired officer from Genesee County Sheriff’s Department. He was described by Sheriff Robert Pickell as an “amazing deputy”. Lieutenant Neville has worked at the Flint airport as a security officer since 2001. Witnesses say Neville was on the second floor near the top of a set of escalators when he was suddenly attacked from behind by the suspect. The man who has not yet been identified was armed with a knife similar to a Marine K-bar combat knife, according to reports from local news outlet WJRT. Police say Neville was rushed to a local hospital were he was listed in critical condition.
But in a recent update, he has since been upgraded to stable after coming out of emergency surgery to repair the wounds he received in the attack. Police announced that they had taken a suspect into custody and he is currently undergoing questioning. Thus far they have declined to release any other information regarding the suspect.
A witness at the airport told MLive that he saw the officer on his knees, bleeding heavily from the neck. Ken Brown said; “The cop was on his hands and knees bleeding from his neck. I said they need to get him a towel.”
Mr. Brown said he was at the airport to drop off his daughter. He also said that he observed a man who appeared to be detained by police not far from a knife that was laying on the floor. Meanwhile, another witness told Fox News that the knife welding attacker’s face was ”totally blank” as he carried out the attack.
The airport has been ordered closed by the FBI until further notice while they conduct their investigation into the attack. The FBI has remained tight-lipped on what happened at the airport, having released a very brief statement on the attack.
An FBI spokesperson said: “The FBI, with our local, state and federal law enforcement partners, is jointly investigating this incident to determine the nature and motive for the attack. We are aware of reports that the attacker made statements immediately prior to or while attacking the officer, but it is too early to determine the nature of these alleged statements or whether or not this was an act of terrorism.”