Flint airport stabbing suspect tried to buy gun in Mt. Clemens before attack

- Amor Ftouhi, the Canadian accused of stabbing an airport security officer in Flint, tried to buy a gun at the Gibraltar Trade Center in Mt. Clemens shortly after arriving in the U.S. on Friday, FOX 2 has learned.

The FBI said that Ftouhi entered the country legally last week through Lake Champlain in Upstate New York. The Quebec resident then made his way to Michigan, where FOX 2 learned he visited the Gibraltar Trade Center and tried unsuccessfully to buy a gun.

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The Gibralter Trade Center is a massive indoor marketplace where guns and knives are among the many items for sale by vendors who rent space. The last show was this weekend and it's not clear whether Ftouhi visited the trade center on Saturday or Sunday.

He reportedly told the FBI that after his attempt to buy a gun failed he bought the knife he used to stab Lt. Jeff Neville at Bishop International Airport in Flint on Wednesday morning.

During a press conference on Thursday, the FBI confirmed that Ftouhi tried to buy a gun in the U.S. but would not say where he tried to purchase the weapon.

Ftouhi was rejected early in the process because he is not a U.S. citizen.

FBI agent Thomas Sondgeroth wrote in a criminal complaint filed against Ftouhi in federal court that Ftouhi used an "Amazon Jungle Survival Knife" to stab Neville.

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After interviewing a law enforcement officer who witnessed the attack and an FBI agent who reviewed surveillance video, Sondgeroth wrote that Ftouhi entered the airport around 8:50 a.m. carrying two bags, went to a second-floor restaurant around 9:10 a.m., left the restaurant about 30 minutes later and entered a restroom, where he left his bags. Less than a minute later, he emerged yelling "Allahu Akbar," and stabbing Neville, Sondgeroth's report said.

Sondgeroth wrote that Ftouhi "continued to yell 'Allah' several times. He further exclaimed something similar to 'you have killed people in Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan, and we are all going to die.' "

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After officers subdued Ftouhi, he asked them why they did not kill him.

Neville survived the attack and Ftouhi was charged with violence at an international airport. He is in federal custody and faces a detention hearing Wednesday.

Contact M.L. Elrick at ml.elrick@foxtv.com or 248-552-5261.

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