2nd man in airport bomb scare appears in court

Published On: Dec 24 2013 09:44:42 AM EST   Updated On: Oct 02 2013 11:10:00 PM EDT

Manuel Rivera was arrested in a separate event during the Jacksonville International Airport bomb scare. He was in court today to face charges of resisting an officer.


The second man arrested during a bomb scare at Jacksonville International Airport this week appeared in court Thursday.

Police say 39-year-old Zeljko Causevic told Transportation Security Administration agents he had a bomb in his bag. Investigators said they found several devices, which were deemed safe.

As police arrived, they said they found 35-year-old Manuel Rivera acting suspiciously and arrested him on a charge of resisting an officer without violence. Rivera made his first appearance Thursday on that charge, asking the judge to drop it.

Through his attorney, Rivera said he had nothing to do with the threat and shouldn't have been arrested. The judge agreed that he wasn't involved but said the charges will stand.

IMAGES: Suspicious packages found, airport evacuated, 2 detained

Airport authorities said as passengers were evacuating from the airport Tuesday, Rivera caught officers' attention.

"The second suspect, totally separate but not known at the time, started running from the terminal," said Michael Stewart, of the Jacksonville Aviation Authority. "He had a backpack on at the time, and that raised some questions. And when police engaged the person, they threw the backpack down and continued to run."

Rivera was caught outside the terminal near a drop-off area, and his arrest was caught on camera (pictured, right) by witnesses. After interviewing him, police said he had nothing to do with Causevic's bomb threat, but they said he did resist the officers without violence, a second-degree misdemeanor. He's been in jail ever since.

Rivera and his public defender attorney told the judge there wasn't a reason for the officers to arrest him,. The judge said he would keep the charges and set a court date for next week.

Rivera is from Rockford, Ill., and told the judge he was headed to South Dakota at the time of his arrest.

Stewart said officers acted appropriately during a difficult time, and overall, the response to a threat at JIA was excellent.

"All parties involved were nothing short of exemplary," he said.

Rivera was being held in the Duval County jail with bail set at $10,003. If he is able to bond out, he will have to wear a GPS tracking device.

Cosavic also remains in jail with bail set at $1 million.


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