Authorities don't believe man who stole plane had a pilot's license

In a tweet Alaska Airlines confirmed they were aware of an incident involving an unauthorised take-off

"It just hurts to hear someone you know, and just hear the pain in their voice", Kaelin said. He described him as a 29-year-old man who might have mental health problems.

The Pierce County Sheriff´s office ruled out terrorism Friday.

He then said he would perform a last barrel role before he crashed into a sparsely populated area of Ketron Island.

Those agents guide planes, handle bags and de-ice planes, Horizon Air says.

During the doomed flight he spoke to air traffic control who pleaded with Russell to land. Just a broken guy. He mentioned "having a few screws loose" and demonstrated signs of suicidal ideation.

The pilot marvels at the beauty of the Olympics.

"Hey, pilot guy", Rich asks. "Can this thing do a black flip thing?". I don't know man!

Ground control advises him to wait.

The fighter jets flew at supersonic speed, triggering a boom first taken to be an explosion, as they raced to intercept the plane. Moments later they heard an explosion.

He went through various background checks to get clearance to be in the secured area, authorities said.

"There is a protocol to not allow anyone singularly to get onboard an aircraft", CNN safety analyst David Soucie said.

Russell appears to have been a ground service agent, the paper said.

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Constance von Muehlen, chief operating officer of Horizon Air, a sister carrier of Alaska Airlines, said that at about 8pm an employee of the airline undertook an unauthorised take-off of a Q400 twin-engine turboprop airplane.

"We've confirmed a Horizon Air Q400 that had an unauthorized takeoff from SeaTac around 8pm has gone down near Ketron Island in Pierce County, WA".

A stolen Horizon Air passenger plane flies above Puget Sound.

This is a developing story, more information to come. "This is what we call the inside risk", he said, explaining that the security measures should not only be aimed at passengers, but also at employees. "Witnesses said a. plane is going down". We have police boats, we have everybody responding. "We are sending resources and people".

Two F-15 jets were scrambled in response to the stolen plane from the Oregon Air National Guard in Portland, Oregon. The wooded island, about 25 miles southwest from the airport, has a population of about 20 people, the Seattle Times reported, and is only accessible by ferry.

The FBI is involved in the investigation, Troyer said. But ... the air traffic controller had to tell him how to set what they call the "bugs" - they're just little sort of little levers, or little notches on your indicator for your heading ... which is kind of basic.

He said: "I hope this doesn't ruin your day".

At one point, he said: "Hey do you think if I land this successfully Alaska will give me a job as a pilot?"

According to the mercurynews.com, witnesses reported seeing the Bombardier Q400, a turboprop aircraft, perform a loop-the-loop and almost slam into Chambers Bay, all while being pursued by fighter jets. He knew something was off, he said.

Dozens of personnel were out at the crash site, and co-workers and family members were being interviewed, he said.

"It was unfathomable, it was something out of a movie", King told the Times. Check back for updates.

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