Fugitive attempts to steal plane, commits suicide
POSTED: Tuesday, July 17, 2012 - 8:00pm
UPDATED: Tuesday, July 17, 2012 - 8:04pm
ST. GEORGE, Utah (KSTU) — A wanted fugitive committed suicide after a failed attempt at stealing a SkyWest Airlines plane from the St. George Municipal Airport.
The FBI and other law enforcement agencies were at the airport investigating the "ground incident," authorities confirmed to FOX 13.
A law enforcement official said the fugitive, who was wanted on state charges, was unable to get the plane off the ground.
While authorities refused to release details Tuesday morning, it prompted road closures around the airport and the cancellation of flights. City officials reported minor damage to the airport and some cars parked nearby.
"While the airport was closed overnight, a SkyWest aircraft at the St. George Municipal Airport in Utah was involved in a ground incident while the aircraft was not in service," the airline said in a statement Tuesday. "SkyWest is fully cooperating with the FBI's investigation of this incident."
An FBI spokeswoman confirmed the agency was investigating, alongside the Transportation Security Administration and St. George police.
"We are still gathering facts, but it is important to note there is no ongoing public safety issue and the scene is under the control of law enforcement," FBI spokeswoman Debbie Dujanovic Bertram told FOX 13.
SkyWest Airlines released the following statement about the incident:
After the St. George Municipal Airport closed Monday night, a SkyWest Airlines aircraft was involved in a ground incident. There were no passengers onboard the CRJ200 as it was not in service at the time. The aircraft did sustain damage; the extent of the damage is currently being inspected by our maintenance and safety professionals. SkyWest is cooperating with authorities in the investigation.
Passengers scheduled to fly in and out of St. George are being reaccommodated on other flights, as well as with ground transportation from nearby Cedar City, Utah until the airport is able to reopen. Any passengers who have questions about rebooking should contact Delta Air Lines Reservations at (800) 221.1212 or United Airlines Reservations at (800) 241.6522.