Alaska pilot misled authorities about details in fatal crash, NTSB says

Published: Dec. 14, 2017 at 12:50 PM AKST
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An Alaska pilot has been indicted by a federal grand jury, dating back to a fatal plane crash near Atigun Pass three years ago.

The plane, a Navion L-17A, was registered to Forest Kirst, 60, of Fairbanks, who now faces federal charges after authorities say he lied about details of the deadly crash.

The crash, which took place on Aug. 24, 2014, injured the three passengers aboard.

Those aboard were Darrell Spencer, Daphne McCann, and Marcene Nason, all visiting Alaska from New Brunswick, Canada.

They were airlifted to area hospitals via helicopter. One of those passengers, Darrell Spencer, died from his injuries 35 days later.

Clint Johnson with the National Transportation Safety Board said in 2014 that the plane crashed fairly close to the road near the top of the pass.

Thursday, investigators with the NTSB said that Kirst misled them regarding details of the plane crash.

Kirst now stands charged with lying about the altitude of the plane right before it crashed, and misleading the NTSB with "varying explanations as to how the crash occurred."

The NTSB said that these charges would come with a maximum sentence of five years behind bars, and a possible $250,000 fine.