By Eric Longabardi
An American Airlines 737 departing John Wayne Airport in Santa Ana at approximately 7:30 this morning was involved in a serious incident after the jet had a 'bird strike' during take-off and declared an emergency while in-flight over Newport Beach, CA.
According to a resident in the area who lives just under the take-off flight path, extremely loud bangs and unusually loud sounds were heard from the ground as the jet took off over Newport Beach's Upper Back Bay.
Due to rain and a winter storm rolling through the area, a low cloud ceilng kept any view of the plane from the ground hidden as the American Airlines jet flew inside the clouds.
One resident who heard the commotion described hearing "really loud banging and popping exploding noises and everybody was coming out of their houses to see what was going on".
FAA spokesman Ian Gregor confirmed the emergency incident after being contacted by The Enterprise Report as it was unfolding.
Gregor told TER "American 634, a Boeing 737 from SNA to DFW, declared an emergency due to a reported bird strike while departing from SNA and is diverting to LAX. ETA 8 a.m."
As the flight headed north to LAX to make an emergency landing the exact nature and extent of damage to the aircraft was still unknown.
FAA spokesman Gregor confirmed the airplane's right side #2 engine was where the problem had occurred. According to the FAA the flight "landed without incident at LAX at 7:49"
The full extent of the in-flight emergency is not yet known. A response from American Airlines to the incident was not yet available.
By Eric Longabardi
For more on the life and career of Huel Howser please go to Huell's own Huell Howser Productions website here. You'll find a complete biography on the man and his work in television over the past three decades.
The Enterprise Report has learned that the gunman involved in the shooting last night in Newport Beach, CA at the Fashion Island shopping center had a permit to carry a weapon and was a licensed state security guard/patrol person.
Mark Gurrola, 42 seen above in his booking photo provided by the Orange County Sheriff's Department was also licensed to carry a police baton records indicate.
Gurrola was first issued the permit to carry a weapon in 1994 according to state records. The permit was "cancelled" for unknown reasons.
Why Gurrola opened fire last night is still under investigation by authorities. For The Enterprise Report's previous reporting on this story click here
A lone gunman opened fire in the parking lot of an upscale Newport Beach, California shopping center just after 4:30PM Saturday. According to Newport Beach police over 50 rounds were fired from a small caliber handgun before police officers, already on patrol at the shopping center, were able to locate and take the suspect into custody without further incident.
According to Newport Beach Deputy Police Chief David Mcgill, the suspected shooter, Marcos Sarinana Gurrola, 42 did not resist and was not armed or when officers approached him after being alerted to shots being fired in a parking lot adjacent to a Macy's Deparment Store. Large numbers of holiday shoppers were at the location and numerous calls to 911 flooded in from the public as the incident unfolded.
A video, posted on YouTube caught shooting as it happened. The poster claims he was taking packages out to his car in the parking lot when he heard gunshots and turned on his cellphone and began recording.
The poster of the video Patrick Wyrick, of Lake Forest, CA, provided this detailed eyewitness account of what he said he saw happened as his camera captured the sounds and a glimpse of the shooter:
"I was taking packages out to the car when I heard a bunch of shots. I wasn't sure they were real or not. Then a heard another set of shots and then another. I couldn't see who was shooting, but I started to take video in the direction the shots came from while standing behind the car you see in the foreground. My video catches the last two clips he shot and I could finally see him when he shot off the last clip. You can barely make the shooter out. He is just beneath the little redish triangle immediately left of the two palm trees in the center of the picture. Before I left, I saw the him on the ground and surrounded by police, but my daughter was very upset so I left to pick them up and get out of the area. My wife and daughter were at an ice cream shop in the mall when the shooting happened. They ended up running and screaming with everyone toward the opposite side of the mall."
As police responded to the shooter, people both in the parking lot and inside the adjacent Macy's store and throughout the shopping center sought to escape and fled as confusion and fear spread.
The Enterprise Report spoke to a woman working at a small kiosk selling hats just outside an extrance to the Macy's store about what she witnessed happening as people rushed from the store trying to get away from twhere the shooting was coming from.
The woman, "Sophia", who didn't want her full name used spoke to to The Enterprise Report on tape exclusively. Listen to her audio interview as she describes what happend in the moments as the incident unfolded. She says she ended up running away from the store and finding shelter at another store where employees locked the doors trying to shield freightened shoppers from any potential threat. The woman also says she spoke directly to a woman who came face to face with the alledged shooter.
Take a listen to her chilling account:
Newport Beach pollce spokesman Kathy Lowe said Gurrola is currently being held on assault with a deadly weapon charges. Other charges may pending. Gurrola was booked into the Orange County Men's Central Jail. His bail is set at 250,000 according to jail information reviewed for this report.