Police at Orlando International Airport in Florida State have taken into custody an armed man on Tuesday night (30 May) after an employee of a rental car service raised an alarm.

"There is a guy out there with a gun, Take cover. He has a huge gun," the Thrifty rental car employee told people at the airport.

The gunman, identified as Michael W Pettigrew, 26, pointed the gun at officers and said "shoot me, shoot me!", police said at a briefing at 10.50pm local time (3.50BST next day) at Terminal A 1st level by rental car area.

They added that "hundreds" of officers responded to the crisis and brought the situation under control quickly.

"Our main objective was getting him contained and that happened very quickly. Contain situation and bring to a peaceful resolution, which we did."

Local media reports stated that the suspect was a marine, but there was no connection with him and the airport.

Earlier, Sergeant Wanda Miglio said police immediately responded to reports of an armed man at the terminal, but no shots were fired. The suspect was speaking with a crisis negotiator, according to earlier Twitter posts by Orlando police.

At first, police tweeted that the suspect was contained and later added that the man was in custody and everyone was safe at the airport.

According to the airport's Twitter posts, the incident had minimal impact on its operations. However, the airport was surrounded by rows of police cars and officers. CNN reported that the incident affected the arrival of certain flights, but some were seen taking off from the airport.

The news of an armed man at the airport terminal created panic among the flyers who were seen posting pictures and videos of the chaos on social media sites.