The FBI is investigating after a helicopter crashed at an airport in California on Wednesday during a reported attempted theft.
The theft suspect is accused of trying to start four helicopters at Sacramento Executive Airport between 4 a.m. and 6 a.m. before managing to operate one, according to Sacramento police and the FBI.
The suspect’s joyride was short-lived as the Bell 429 helicopter wound up crashing at the airport. Officials found the helicopter laying on its side with its rotors sheared off and its tail boom cracked.
The suspect — who remains unnamed at the time of this report — fled the scene before authorities arrived.
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No injuries were reported, and no arrests have been made as of Thursday morning.
Law enforcement obtained surveillance video showing a person on the tarmac attempting to break into multiple helicopters, FOX40 Sacramento reported.
While neither police nor the FBI shared any details about the individual spotted on the video, officials said there is a person of interest.
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“Part of the investigation would be to determine motive as to why this individual attempted to steal a helicopter,” Sean Ragan, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI’s Sacramento Field Office, told the station. “At this point, we have no indication that there is terrorism involved or that there is any terrorism motivation, but that is part of the ongoing investigation.”
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It’s a federal crime to destroy an aircraft. The FBI, Federal Aviation Administration and National Transportation Safety Board are investigating.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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