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Man in Zorro Costume Questioned at LAX After Reports of Shooting Cause Cause Airport Chaos


A false report of gunfire sent hundreds of people to run in fear for their lives at LAX Sunday night, and the appearance of Zorro did little to ease the chaos.

Read: In-Flight Horror as Engine Fails and Rips Apart, Forcing Emergency Landing

The reports of gunfire inside one of the nation’s busiest airports were "proven to be loud noises only," according to authorities. The LAPD reported no injuries.

Police responded in force with guns drawn. The entire airport was locked down for more than two hours causing gridlock on the ground and in the air.

A man donning a Zorro outfit was briefly detained by police. He was later let go after it was discovered the unidentified man who had come from an audition and did not have time to change. He was not responsible for the incident. 

The actor told CBS News: "The next thing I know, LAPD is all over me, un-beknowing the fact they’re coming after me. For whatever reason.”

He spoke to ABC News, saying: "They turned me over, put handcuffs on me and then told me what was going on...they searched me. What happened was somebody called and said there's a man in dark clothing out here. They got scared, I guess. But I'm sitting here calling for transportation. Next thing I know, they let me go. They explained to me that crazy stuff happens in the airports."

NBC's Lester Holt was caught up in the pandemonium and reported live on Facebook.


He also updated via Twitter.

Passengers ran through the terminals and on the tarmac at about 8:45 p.m. Some passengers ran for cover believing that the airport was under siege.

By 11 p.m., all terminals were reopened and passengers were able to go about and travel again.

The incident is similar to an incident two weeks ago at JFK Airport in New York City, where a shooting was falsely reported. The pandemonium was believed to have been caused by loud spectators watching the Olympics.

Read: Panicked Travelers Bolt For Exits After Reports of Shots at JFK; Reports Unfounded

At an Orlando, Florida, mall Thursday, shoppers believed they heard gunfire that ended up being the sound of balloons popping during a controlled fire alarm test. Nine people were injured and the entire mall was evacuated.

Watch: Chaos Erupts at Mall as Popping Balloons at New Joey Fatone Restaurant Are Mistaken for Gunfire 

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