Crashed King Air
The 1979 Beechcraft King Air 200 was substantially damaged after a girl gained access to the general aviation area at Fresno Yosemite International Airport, managed to start one of the turboprop's engines, and propelled the aircraft into a fence and a building. (Photo: Jim Guy/The Fresno Bee)

17-Year-Old Crashes Stolen King Air

Police and aviation authorities in Fresno, California, are investigating how a 17-year-old girl gained access to a Beechcraft King Air 200 and crashed it into an airport building recently at Fresno Yosemite International Airport. The unidentified minor was able to enter the aircraft, which was parked on the TechnicAir ramp, start one of the turboprop twin's engines, and move it.

Surveillance video shows the aircraft moving away from the repair facility building, pivoting 180 degrees after striking a chainlink fence, and then returning approximately 200 feet to impact the repair facility’s hangar. According to airport officials, the 40-year-old airplane suffered substantial damage, and images from the scene show damage to the left engine.

In a statement, the airport noted the minor was in the pilot’s seat wearing a headset when police arrived on the scene. While uninjured, she was described as appearing disoriented and was uncooperative as she was taken into custody and charged as a juvenile for attempted aircraft theft.

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