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Little Rock, Arkansas, airport executive director shot by federal agents dies from injuries

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — The executive director of Little Rock’s airport who was injured earlier this week in a shootout with federal agents serving a search warrant at his home has died.

Bill and Hillary Clinton National Airport, in a statement, announced the death of Bryan Malinowski at noon Thursday. He was 53.

Malinowski joined the management team at Clinton National in 2008 as director of properties, planning and development before being promoted to deputy director of the airport a year later. He took over as executive director in 2019.

Bill Walker, chair of the Little Rock Municipal Airport Commission, noted that under Malinowski’s leadership the airport saw “significant growth and success” and offered condolences to Malinowski’s family.

“Bryan was a 16-year employee of the airport,” Walker said in the statement announcing his death. “Under his leadership, our airport has experienced significant growth and success, expanding services and offerings to our community and state. We extend our heartfelt condolences to Bryan’s wife, Maer, loved ones and friends.”

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives said agents were trying to serve the warrant just after 6 a.m. Tuesday at Malinowski’s home in west Little Rock when someone inside fired gunshots at the agents, news outlets reported. The agents returned fire, striking the shooter, who was identified as Malinowski.

Matthew Malinowski told told NBC News on Wednesday that his younger brother was shot in the head during the exchange of gunfire, and the family wasn’t sure if he would survive much longer.

An ATF agent, whose identity was not released, also was shot in the exchange of gunfire but suffered a non-life-threatening wound, officials said.

A telephone message left Thursday with a spokesman for the ATF was not immediately returned.

Neither the ATF, state police nor federal prosecutors would provide details of what agents were looking for, citing an ongoing investigation.

The Associated Press