Former White House press secretary was nearly caught In Fort Lauderdale shooting

A former White House press secretary says that he was in Terminal 2 of the Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport on Friday when a gunman started shooting in the baggage claim area.

Ari Fleischer, who worked under President George W. Bush, tweeted, "I'm at the Ft. Lauderdale Airport. Shots have been fired. Everyone is running."

Minutes later, he followed up with the message, "The police said there is one shooter and five victims."

Adam Weinstein, a Daily Beast reporter, writes in a piece that he drove to the airport and offered Fleischer a lift; during the car ride, the former presidential spokesperson told him, "I had just stepped off my flight from New York and was going to head down the escalator to the baggage claim, but had to make a pit stop. Thank God I had to make a pit stop."

While in a bathroom in an upper level of the terminal, he described hearing the sounds of gunfire.

In another interview, Fleischer told the Washington Post, "... I would have been in the middle of it. It was right below me."

Considering the possibility that the shooter could come upstairs, Fleischer along with others in the bathroom decided to make their way through the open space to a nearby exit.

NBC News reports that five were killed during the incident; the suspected shooter, 26-year-old Esteban Santiago, was arrested and is said to be facing murder charges.

RELATED: See photos from the Fort Lauderdale airport shooting

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