'Suicidal Male' Steals Plane And Crashes After 'Unauthorized Takeoff' From Sea-Tac

An onlooker captured a shot of the Alaska Airlines plane in the skies over Seattle.

"We are aware of an incident involving an unauthorized take-off of a Horizon Air Q400", according to a statement by Horizon's parent company Alaska Airlines, posted at 9:16 p.m. Seattle time.

The incident shutdown SeaTac airport but flights are returning to normal.

No passengers were on board the plane, the airline said.

Two F-15s fighter jets pursued the plane but were not involved in the crash, local TV station KIRO7 reported.

The Pierce County Sheriff's Office said the military F-15s were not involved in the crash.

Witnesses reported seeing the plane being chased by military aircraft before it crashed on Ketron Island, southwest of Tacoma, Washington.

The sheriff's department said "preliminary" information was that the plane's pilot was "a mechanic from unknown airlines" who "was doing stunts in air" or lacked flying skills. "Our hearts are with the family of the individual" who flew the plane, she said.

The plane was a Q400, a Bombardier turboprop plane. The sheriff says that the man is a Pierce County resident, and that it is believed that he is the only casualty from the crash.

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Audio of the rogue pilot speaking on radio to the SeaTac air traffic control has been shared online, from where it has since gone viral. "The FAA is not a security agency, although we work closely with other government agencies on security issues".

The video then ends - and just moments later the aircraft had crashed in the Pudget Sound. Just a broken guy, got a few screws loose I guess.

A witness on the ground, Bryan Sichley, said he was at Chambers Bay in Tacoma and saw a plane nose dive after being chased by two fighter jets.

Authorities reportedly tried to intercept the plane with an F-15 aircraft.

Later, an official encouraged him to land the plane, to which the man replied: "I don't know, man". He didn't hear the crash, but saw smoke.

There was no indication that the incident was an act of terror and no passengers were aboard the plane, the Federal Bureau of Investigation said in a series of Tweets. "We heard the jet because our windows were down while we were waiting in the ferry line to go to Anderson Island which is adjacent to Ketron Island".

This is a developing news story.

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