Vince Lattanzio

Fight Over Lights in a Break Room Leads to Deadly Stabbing at Philadelphia International Airport

An argument over a light switch escalated into a deadly stabbing Thursday morning at Philadelphia International Airport, police said.

The stabbing happened around 11 a.m. in a break room for Worldwide Flight Services, an airplane cleaning contractor for Frontier Airlines, in Terminal E.

Philadelphia Police Lt. John Walker said one man turned out a light in the break room, upsetting another man sitting there. The two then got into an argument over the lights.

Walker said a third man then got involved and after some shoves, he pulled out a knife and stabbed one of the man in the thigh. Police initially said he was slashed in the stomach.

The stabbing left the victim, 28-year-old Aaron Jenkins, seriously injured. He was rushed by paramedics to Penn Presbyterian Trauma Center in University City where he later died, Walker said.

Both the alleged doer — identified by police Friday as 35-year-old Kevin Emanuel — and the other man involved in the fight ran from the break room, part of a secure area on the tarmac, to the departures hall. They surrendered when police confronted them.

All three men work for Worldwide Flight Services. Initial information provided by police said they were Frontier employees.

Police have not yet recovered the weapon, but investigators believe it may be a box cutter used as part of the their jobs.

"Obviously, it was a pretty sharp object to get through his stomach and obviously hit some vital organs," Walker said.

The incident never disrupted service at the airport or endangered travelers.

Emanuel is charged with murder and possession of an instrument of a crime. It's not clear if he's retained legal counsel.

Contact Us