John Park, 70, was checking in at a Spirit Airlines counter in Terminal B around 7 a.m., on his way to visit his brother in Detroit, when he was informed about the fee to check his baggage.
Park refused to pay, Port Authority cops said.
After arguing with the ticket agent, Park stormed off leaving the bag behind, police said. When the ticket agent said he couldn’t simply abandon the bag, Park said there was a bomb inside.
Cops took Park into custody while the NYPD bomb squad was called in to look through his bag, Port Authority police spokesman Joseph Pentangelo said.
Park brushed off the airport kerfuffle after he was arraigned on a felony charge of making a terrorist threat — and released without bail.
“I’m an Asian,” he said outside Queens Criminal Court. “[We] have different culture, making jokes.”
“They just overreacted,” Park added.
Following the bomb threat, flights were diverted from Terminal B and several screening checkpoints and pre-security areas were closed and evacuated for two hours.
Travelers were left stuck outside the terminal — and in planes arriving at the airport.
“They told us there was a suspicious package and they had to clear out the terminal so we were sitting on the plane for about an hour,” said Janet Smith-Tolale, 42, who was coming into New York from Atlanta. “I was going to drive. Then my husband said he found some cheap tickets.”
Hindsight is 20/20.