Seattle Man Dead After Stealing and Crashing Plane, Investigation Underway
12 August, 2018, 09:59 | Author: Billie Castillo
"Doing stunts in air or lack of flying skills caused crash into Island", the sheriff said on Twitter.
"This is not a terrorist incident", Ed Troyer with the Pierce County Sheriff's office wrote on Twitter.
Earlier Alaska Airlines reported an "unauthorized take-off" of an airplane and witnesses reported a jet being chased by military planes near Sea-Tac International Airport in Washington state. There were no passengers aboard.
Authorities said the man was a Horizon employee for three and one-half years, had clearance to be among aircraft, and was a Horizon Air ground service agent.
Tilden said the system in place is to credential and secure employees and air fields, but not planes.
Two F-15s fighter jets pursued the plane but were not involved in the crash, local TV station KIRO7 reported.
In a news release issued Saturday, the North American Aerospace Defense Command said two F-15C alert aircraft were scrambled from Portland but did not fire upon the plane.
Officials from Alaska Airlines and Horizon Air said they were still working closely with authorities as they investigate what happened.
The aircraft was stolen about 8pm (local time). Preliminary info is that a mechanic from unknown airlines stole plane.
"We believe it (the plane) was taken by a single Horizon Air employee and no other passengers or crew were on board", she said. On Friday around 7:32 p.m., he got in the cockpit of an empty 76-seat Horizon Air turboprop plane and took off without authorization.
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Russell's social media posts often showed him on adventures with his wife, who he said he met in OR in 2010. At the Alaska Airlines terminal, it was a hushed Friday night.
Gary is at Sea-Tac, I'm in Pierce County headed to where witnesses saw plane chased by F-15s, then a boom, and smoke. Rather than deal with the consequences, it appears that the young man chose to crash in an uninhabited area, taking his life.
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