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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 45664
Last updated: 16 December 2020
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Type:Silhouette image of generic C152 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Cessna 152
Owner/operator:Aero Venture
Registration: N24223
C/n / msn: 15280158
Fatalities:Fatalities: 1 / Occupants: 1
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location:Petaluma, CA -   United States of America
Phase: En route
Departure airport:Petaluma, CA (O69)
Destination airport:
Investigating agency: NTSB
During low level cruise flight, within 2 minutes following takeoff, the airplane collided with terrain. The student pilot arrived at the airport during nighttime hours when the flight school was closed. He was not scheduled to fly that night and was not endorsed for night flight. He removed keys from the lockbox to an airplane of a type he had never before flown and for which he was not endorsed. He entered the airplane without a preflight inspection, started the engine with difficulty, and then proceeded to the runway and took off without pausing for any pretakeoff checks. The airplane was observed to takeoff into the clear night, turn, and fly into a mountainside about 2 miles distant. The pilot's flight instructor and the owner of the flight school both found the pilot's behavior on the night of the accident completely out of character for him. A local law enforcement official said the pilot was the subject of a criminal investigation and that a search warrant had been served on his home earlier the same day while the pilot was not home. The pilot returned home to find that entry to his home had been forced and records and a computer were seized. The local coroner ruled the death a suicide.
Probable Cause: The pilot's intentional flight of the airplane into terrain in an act of suicide.



Revision history:

28-Oct-2008 00:45 ASN archive Added
21-Dec-2016 19:24 ASN Update Bot Updated [Time, Damage, Category, Investigating agency]
09-Dec-2017 15:22 ASN Update Bot Updated [Source, Narrative]

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