CINCINNATI (AP) — The grounding of flights Sunday at Washington Reagan Airport was prompted by a woman who told an Ohio airport worker that there was a bomb aboard an airplane — a warning she later said she had received in a message from God, the director of Dayton’s airport said Monday.
No explosives were found aboard the jet that flew from Dayton International Airport to Reagan, but the threat shut down the airport for about 20 minutes, the FBI said.
The woman approached a US Airways ticket agent in Dayton about midday Sunday, said Terrence Slaybaugh, director of the Dayton International Airport.
“She communicated to the agent that there was a bomb on board and that people were in danger and they needed to turn the plane around — that people were going to be killed,” Slaybaugh told The Associated Press on Monday.
The 54-year-old woman from Shelbyville, Ky., was immediately taken into custody, he said.
She later told police she had received the message about the bomb from God, Slaybaugh said. That explanation was first reported by the Dayton Daily News on Monday.
The woman, whose name was not released, remained at a mental health facility Monday, FBI officials said. She has a history of mental health problems, Slaybaugh said.
No criminal charges have been filed, FBI Special Agent Michael Brooks said Monday. He said he could not comment further.
The woman’s car was searched, but nothing unusual was found in it, Slaybaugh said. He was not sure whether she specifically gave the number of US Airways Flight 2596 and didn’t know her reaction when she was told that the plane had already departed.
The flight landed around 1 p.m. at the airport just outside Washington, its original destination, and authorities interviewed the 44 passengers, the FBI said.