$1 million bail for Jacksonville airport suspect
THE ASSOCIATED PRESS October 2, 2013 12:56AM
Updated: October 2, 2013 1:26PM
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Bail has been set at $1 million for a man accused of claiming he had a bomb at Jacksonville International Airport, prompting an evacuation.
Zeljko Causevic did not speak during his brief appearance in state court Wednesday on charges of making a false report about planting a bomb and making a hoax bomb.
Authorities say the 39-year-old Jacksonville resident told security screeners Tuesday night that he had a bomb in his backpack, but they only found a small luggage scale with two batteries and a microchip.
Causevic was arrested and the airport was shut down for five hours, canceling dozens of flights and stranding passengers.
Airport spokesman Michael Stewart said Causevic was detained between 5:30 and 6 p.m. The airport was evacuated and flights were stopped before reaching the gates. Passengers were displaced for nearly five hours.
Causevic was scheduled to appear in bond court in Jacksonville at 1 p.m. An arrest report indicates he is originally from Bosnia.
Another person was arrested after officials say he started acting suspiciously but authorities said he was not connected to Causevic.
The airport was back to normal operation Wednesday morning.
Passengers and people who arrived at the airport to pick them up Tuesday evening were stranded for hours as officials investigated.
Authorities said some incoming planes were held up on the tarmac until buses arrived to pick up passengers. The passengers were shuttled to nearby hotels.
Arlie Gentry was on a Southwest flight arriving from New York via Baltimore just before 6:30 p.m. Tuesday.
“We moved from one spot on the runway to another spot,” said Gentry, who was reached on his cellphone while still on the plane. “They told us we couldn’t get off the plane.”
Gentry said the pilots initially told passengers they didn’t know what was going on.
While the delay was cumbersome and bothersome, Gentry said everyone on his plane remained calm. He said he was never really concerned for his safety, because the plane remained so far from the terminal.
Around 9:30 p.m., a bus arrived to take the passengers on Gentry’s flight to a nearby hotel.