Friends of Sea-Tac Plane Thief Remember Richard ‘Beebo’ Russell

A Q400 Turboprop like that stolen from Sea Tac International Airport

A Q400 Turboprop like that stolen from Sea Tac International Airport

"FAA air traffic controllers communicated with the individual who was flying the aircraft to try to help him land safely".

The man could be heard on audio recordings telling air traffic controllers that he's "got a lot of people that care about me" and that he is "just a broken guy". "The situation was not their fault but I think they could have given a little more guidance or announced to the plane this is what's going on instead of leaving us all to fend for ourselves", said Leddy. "I'm a broken guy who had a few screws loose".

There were some stunts performed apparently by the plane over the sound and then he crashed into Ketron Island a small, not very highly populated wooded island, just off shore here.

An allegedly suicidal man stole an aircraft from Seattle-Tacoma International Airport and prompted a security scare as authorities scrambled two fighter jets to "do whatever necessary" in order to keep the people Washington state safe.

The Pierce County Sheriff's Office said on Twitter that preliminary information suggested that a mechanic had stolen the aircraft.

The Pierce County sheriff said that the perpetrator acted alone and "was confirmed a suicidal male".

In a brief statement one day after the shocking incident, Russell's family said they were in "devastated".

'An airline employee conducted an unauthorized takeoff without passengers at Sea-Tac; aircraft has crashed in south Puget Sound.

The Bombardier Q400 turboprop airplane is designed for shorter-distance flights and can seat 76 passengers, Alaska Air said on its website.

John Waldron, who captured the plane's loop-the-loop on video, told CNN he was out for an evening stroll and initially thought the aircraft were practicing for an air show.

Pierce County Sheriff Paul Pastor described the incident as a "joyride gone terribly wrong", adding that the pilot "did something foolish and may well have paid with his life".

"No security violations were committed", said Alaska Airlines CEO Brad Tilden. "Normal operations at Sea-Tac Airport have resumed", the airport wrote.

Currently, the FBI has taken over the investigation of the incident and Alaska Air has stated that they are working with authorities and their own safety teams to "thoroughly understand the incident". We believe there are no passengers on board. The jets were not involved in the crash, it said. We're trying to contact the military.

The plane was chased by military aircraft, witnesses said. NORAD launched two F-15C fighter jets from Portland International Airport.

During the conversation, Russell said he had put some fuel in the plane "to go check out the Olympics" - the Olympic Mountains that lie about 100 miles (160 kilometers) away.

Investigators expect they will be able to recover both the cockpit voice recorder and the event data recorder from the plane. "No idea how he achieved that experience".

Royal King told The Seattle Times he was photographing a wedding when he saw the low-flying turboprop being chased by to F-15s.

After the plane approached Ketron Island, Waldron saw a thick column of smoke followed by a loud explosion, he said.

"It was unfathomable, it was something out of a movie", he said.

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