A juvenile student pilot was at the controls when a plane that took off from Danbury Airport crashed Friday morning, killing the 57-year-old flight instructor and injuring herself and a passenger, according to New Milford police.
Anthony Morasco, of New Milford, was presumed dead at the scene of the crash, which occurred at 9:17 a.m. at the end of turf runway at Candlelight Farms Airport in New Milford, officials said.
Morasco, who was the co-pilot, was a flight instructor employed by Arrow Aviation, which owns the plane, a Cessna C-172, police said.
The female student pilot was not identified by name because she is underage, police said. The girl was trapped in the plane and suffered critical injuries in the crash, police said. She was extricated by the New Milford Fire Department and taken by LifeStar helicopter to Hartford Hospital , police said.
"Subsequent investigation revealed that the plane was being flown by a student pilot," New Milford police said i a statement.
A passenger in the backseat, identified as Peter Jellen, 44, of New York, was seriously injured, police said. But he was able to get out of the wreckage and walk to a nearby home, where he asked residents to call 911, police said.
That 911 call came in at 9:51 a.m., nearly 35 minutes after the crash, New Milford said. The resident lives at Border Lane and Green Pond Road in Sherman, near the airport property, police said.
Jellen directed first responders to the crash scene before an ambulance took him to Danbury Hospital, police said.
The plane had departed earlier from Danbury Municipal Airport, about 20 miles away, the Federal Aviation Authority said.
The FAA will investigate the crash, and the National Transportation Safety Board will determine the probable cause, a statement said.
An investigator from the NTSB is scheduled to be at the scene at 8 am. Saturday to begin the investigation, a spokesman said. The crash scene has been secured for investigators, police said.
Arrow Aviation, which operates a flight school out of the Danbury Airport, also owns the plane that crashed July 30 just after takeoff in Danbury.
The pilot, Mark Stern of Redding, died four days after that crash and two passengers were injured.
The airplane that crashed in New Milford was the same aircraft that was stolen from Danbury Airport in a bizarre incident in 2005, NBC Connecticut said. A man and two friends stole the plane and took it on a joyride, landing late at night at the Westchester County Airport in New York, NBC Connecticut said.
Anyone with information on Friday's crash, or anyone who witnessed it, is asked to call New Milford police at 860-355-3133.
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