Grenades found in hand luggage led to evacuation of Hawaii airport, man arrested

Grenades found in hand luggage led to evacuation of Hawaii airport, man arrested

HONOLULU (KHON) — For early morning travelers at Hilo International Airport on the island of Hawaii, travel day got off to a bumpy start Tuesday.

At around 5:45 a.m., TSA agents said they found two grenades during routine checks of travelers’ carry-on luggage.

When a bag went through the X-ray machine, the agents first noticed a suspicious object.

To protect airport staff and departing travelers, the area was immediately evacuated after the discovery until explosives specialists arrived.

Authorities said the grenades were in the hand luggage of 41-year-old Japanese man Akito Fukushima, who was on his way home.

Upon closer inspection, it was found that the grenades were inert and had lost their effect. It is unclear where the grenades came from and what the man intended to do with them.

“He has cooperated with officers, but this is not clear at this time as detectives continue their investigation,” Hawaii Police Captain Brian Prudencio said.

Fukushima was arrested for first-degree terroristic threatening, which is a Class C felony.

Airport operations resumed at around 6:50 a.m.

“TSA reminds everyone that grenades of any kind – including replicas – are not permitted in checked or carry-on bags,” said Lorie Dankers, a TSA spokeswoman. “If a traveler brings any type of grenade to the airport, it will cause service disruptions and delays for travelers. Please check the contents of your baggage before arriving at the airport to avoid these types of situations.”

Hawaii police said the suspect in Tuesday morning’s arrest is in custody awaiting arraignment.