Daytona Beach, FL – A man who jumped the fence, not once, but twice, at the county’s largest airport ends up getting the whole facility shut down.
And law enforcement is still looking for the man, but he has been identified.
The Volusia County Sheriff’s Office says they first ran into 33-year-old Robert Kowaleski around 6:30 on Tuesday (October 1st). The report says that Kowaleski was walking around and asking passengers for cigarettes before he was warned by deputies to stop or he’d be forced to leave.
About an hour later, deputies were then called to the area of Bellevue Avenue and Clyde Morris Boulevard with reports that someone was seen inside the fenced perimeter at Daytona Beach International Airport. Authorities say that the description of the suspect matched that of Kowaleski’s.
A quick look at the surveillance footage shows Kowaleski climbing the fence and entering the airport while the facility was open with planes moving on runways and taxiways.
According to the report, he was initially reported by a pilot in the area of one of the taxiways while he ran towards DBIA’s main runway, 7L.
Not long after, Kowaleski was seen outside of Waste Pro, where he again jumped a fence and disappeared. The Daytona Beach Police Department was dispatched along with a K-9, but Kowaleski was not found.
But, the night didn’t end there.
Around 9:30, VCSO received a call from the DBIA Control Center, who said Kowaleski was spotted on camera jumping the fence at the ATP gate, running back onto airport property.
At that point, all airport operations were shut down. VCSO, along with Air One and other airport employees tried to look for Kowaleski, but couldn’t find him. Air One eventually cleared the airport using thermal imaging and no unauthorized people were found.
While Kowaleski wasn’t found, he was positively identified by employees in DBIA’s Control Center. VCSO has filed charges against Kowaleski and issued a bulletin for his capture.