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How Aviation Worker Stole Plane, Threatened To Crash It



How Aviation Worker Stole Plane, Threatened To Crash It

A Tupelo Aviation employee allegedly stole a twin-engine plane at the city’s airport early Saturday, took off, and threatened to crash into a local Walmart before eventually landing unharmed in a field.

Tupelo Police Chief John Quaka disclosed this at a news briefing on Saturday afternoon.

Quaka identified the man piloting the aircraft as Cory Wayne Patterson of Shannon, Mississippi.

“We do not believe he is a licensed pilot. That is still ongoing to discover this,” the police chief said.

Patterson worked at Tupelo Aviation — which provides fueling and other services at Tupelo’s airport — for 10 years as a lineman fueling aircraft, Quaka said.

“We do know that that aircraft was fully fueled the night before,” he added.

Patterson took off from the Tupelo airport shortly after 5 a.m. CT, and soon afterward called 911 from the plane to say he would crash it into a Walmart in the city, the police chief said.

Quaka said that while negotiators were able to convince the pilot not to crash into the store, he decided not to land during what was supposed to be the final approach back into the Tupelo Regional Airport.

“Negotiators from Tupelo Police Department made contact with the pilot and were able to convince him to not carry out this deed and to land the aircraft at Tupelo airport. The pilot did not have experience to land an aircraft. A private pilot assisted us in helping this pilot complete this. However, it was not completed. Upon final approach, the pilot aborted the landing and traveled in a northwest direction away from Tupelo,” he said.

Police said Patterson posted a “goodbye” message on his Facebook page from the aircraft at 9:32 a.m. CT.

“Sorry everyone. Never actually wanted to hurt anyone. I love my parents and sister this isn’t your fault. Goodbye,” Patterson wrote in the post. His account now appears to be disabled or deleted.

Around the time the message was posted, “we know he was getting close to running out of fuel,” Quaka said.

“At 10:08 a.m., FAA lost radar contact with the aircraft. At 10:12 a.m., our negotiator  re-established contact with the pilot. The pilot confirmed he had landed in a field, and he was uninjured,” he said.

The plane landed northwest of Ripley Airport in Ripley, Mississippi, according to the Federal Aviation Administration.

“This is more likely a crime of opportunity,” Quaka said.

Patterson was in contact with family members at some point during the flight, Quaka said, adding it is too early in the investigation to determine a motive in this incident.

Tupelo resident says she was about to get diapers from Walmart when the plane flew right over her home

Sommer Thornton, a resident of Tupelo who lives near the Mississippi city’s airport, said she woke up around 6 a.m. local time to get diapers from the nearby Walmart for a baby shower. But then she opened up Facebook and read the news that police said a pilot was threatening to crash a plane into a Walmart in the city.

READ ALSO: Air Force Personnel Arrested Over Role In Attack On NDA

Local news reports were advising the community to stay away from the store, she told CNN.

Thornton said she heard a plane buzzing above, but didn’t think much of it. “I live right beside the airport, so it’s normal for me to hear airplanes,” she said.

When she walked out of her home, she saw a small plane flying quite low.

“And it kept circling around and around and then it dropped down,” she told CNN.

“He literally flew over everything,” Thornton is heard saying in a video she shared with CNN that shows the plane zipping by right above her home.

Thornton said she wanted to get a poster and write phrases like, “You are loved” and “Please come down,” hoping the individual flying the plane would see it.

Then she remembered the plane could run out of fuel, so she ran inside her house to get her husband and told him they needed to get their kids and evacuate.

As they started rounding the kids up, news reports came in saying the plane had moved away from Tupelo, so they stayed put.

Thornton said she was still in shock hours after the plane left her area.

“I just wanted to get diapers,” she said.



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Police Fine British Prime Minister For Not Wearing Seatbelt In Car



Police Fine British Prime Minister For Not Wearing Seat Belt In Car

The British Police have fined Prime Minister Rishi Sunak for not wearing a seatbelt in the back of a moving car while on a trip to northern England.

Sunak, who recorded an Instagram video on Thursday, was seen turning in his seat to talk to the camera without a seatbelt on, a video that has now been deleted from the social media site.

The PM’s office at Downing Street said the incident was a “brief error of judgment”, but Lancashire constabulary announced they were fining Sunak for the infraction, The Guardian UK says.

The force said: “You will be aware that a video has been circulating on social media showing an individual failing to wear a seatbelt while a passenger in a moving car in Lancashire.

“After looking into this matter, we have today issued a 42-year-old man from London with a conditional offer of fixed penalty.”

Reacting, a spokesperson for Sunak said: “The prime minister fully accepts this was a mistake and has apologised. He will of course comply with the fixed penalty.”

A fixed penalty means Sunak can pay a fine to avoid a court hearing.

The police did not disclose how much they had fined the prime minister, but according to the government’s safety campaign, any driver or passenger not wearing a seatbelt is breaking the law and is liable to be fined up to £500 if the case goes to court, according to The Guardian UK.

Sunak’s transportation habits were already a talking point in the United Kingdom before the incident, a report by AFP says.

 READ  ALSO: Rishi Sunak Becomes UK’s New Prime Minister

His political rivals have taken aim at his use of a private jet to make multiple short flights in recent days.

This is not the first time Sunak has been slapped with a police fine.

He was fined while serving as Chancellor of the Exchequer for attending a Downing Street party in June 2020 that violated the government’s rules on social distancing, according to an AFP report.

The latest fine makes Sunak the second Conservative prime minister to receive a police fine in less than 12 months. The Metropolitan police, in 2020, issued a fixed-penalty notice to Boris Johnson for attending a party during lockdown. Sunak was fined for attending the same event as Chancellor of the Exchequer.

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World’s Oldest Nun Dies At 118



World's Oldest Nun Does At 118

French nun Sister André who was the world’s oldest known person died at age 118 in the southern French city of Toulon, the city’s mayor Hubert Falco said on Wednesday.

Born in the southern French town of Ales on Feb. 11, 1904, as Lucile Randon, Sister André was listed as the oldest person alive by the Gerontology Research Group in April 2022.

The Frenchwoman worked as a home teacher in her youth and did not enter a religious community until she was in her early 40s.
Most recently, Sister André was confined to a wheelchair, and for several years she could no longer see properly.

READ ALSO: Eight Shot At Crowded Martin Luther King Day Block Party

She was an honorary citizen of Toulon, where she lived in a retirement home for several years.
Falco praised her as incredibly modern and a nun with a big heart.

Guinness World Records said Lucile, who took the name of Sister André in 1944, was the second-oldest French person and the second-oldest European person ever recorded.
More recently, Sister André received the record for the oldest COVID-19 survivor after an infection in 2021.

“It’s difficult to fathom that someone born before the patenting of plastic, zips or even bras were alive well into the 21st century, and robust enough to beat COVID-19’’, the Guinness World Records editor, Craig Glenday said in a statement.

“It’s been an honour to record her story in the pages of the Guinness World Records book, and she will live on in history as the fourth oldest person ever authenticated.’’

With her death, Maria Branyas Morera, who lived in Spain, assumed the title of the world’s oldest person at age 115.


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Eight Shot At Crowded Martin Luther King Day Block Party



Eight Shot At Crowded Martin Luther King Day Block Party

Eight people were shot at a block party packed with more than 1,000 people celebrating Martin Luther King Jr. Day in Fort Pierce, Florida, Monday, police said.

All eight of those shot were adults and they were ferried to the hospital for treatment, including one person in critical condition, St. Lucie County Sheriff’s Office Chief Deputy Brian Hester said during a news conference.

Six people, including a baby, were killed in a ‘massacre’ that is likely gang-related, California sheriff’s office says.

At least four others were injured as people ran for safety, the sheriff’s office said. One of those injured was a juvenile who was hurt as people rushed to flee the park where the event was being held, Hester said.

“As the shots rang out, people were just running in all directions,” Hester said. “There were people laying behind cars, laying behind anything they could lay behind. It was kind of hard to tell who was a victim and who was just hiding at that point.”

The shooting began at around 5:20 p.m. in Ilous Ellis Park, he said, where the community had gathered for an afternoon car show, dance performances, live DJ and kids activities to celebrate Martin Luther King Jr. Day, an event flyer shows.

In a video taken by a witness, attendees are seen dancing by their cars and enjoying the music when what sounds like gunfire begins to resonate over the song. People in the crowd start to rush away from the noise, some ducking behind cars or grabbing children’s hands and running across the street.

READ ALSO: A Philosopher’s Spiritual Journey And Bertrand Russell’s Influence

The incident marks the 30th mass shooting in the country this year, according to the Gun Violence Archive.

So far this year, the US is averaging about two mass shootings per day.

Two sheriff’s deputies who were stationed in the park ran toward the scene and provided aid to those injured, Hester said. Several witnesses also helped to render aid and drive people to the hospital, he added.

The sheriff’s office has not named any suspects in the shooting, but investigators were following up on several leads from witnesses and community members Monday night.

Investigators preliminarily believe the gunfire involved multiple shooters and resulted from “a disagreement of some sort between two parties,” Hester said.

“So many innocent people that were injured or hurt were not part of the disagreement,” he added.

Survivors of mass shootings are left with lifelong wounds — and mounting bills

“It’s really unfortunate and it’s sad that during a celebration of someone who represented peace and equality, a disagreement results in a use of guns and violence,” Hester said.

He estimated as many as 40 sheriff’s office personnel were working the case Monday night as they processed the scene, spoke to victims at the hospital and followed up on leads.

Investigators are asking anyone with information about the shooting to contact authorities or submit anonymous tips through CrimeStoppers. The sheriff’s department is handling the case because the Ilous Ellis Park is a St. Lucie County park.

Fort Pierce is a coastal city about an hour’s drive north of West Palm Beach.



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