A composite image showing the crashed King Air 200 (L) and the alleged perpetrator of the plane theft (R.)

  • A 17-year-old was arrested over the unsuccessful theft of a R28 million private plane, which crashed into an airport building in Fresno, California.
  • According to airport officials, the unnamed teen jumped the airfield around dawn, got into the plane and started one of the King Air 200's twin engines.
  • The plane made it across a runway before crashing into an airport building, which was badly damaged.
  • Police say they found the girl confused and uncooperative, but not injured.
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A 17-year-old girl was arrested after police say she stole a private plane, drove it along a runway, then crashed it at a California airport.

Security footage taken at Fresno Yosemite International Airport on Wednesday, and broadcast by local news station ABC30, shows the aircraft, a King Air 200 plane, veering across the runway then hitting a building.

Airport spokeswoman Vikkie Calderon told The Fresno Bee that the perpetrator jumped the airport fence, got into the plane, put on the pilot's headset, and started one of its two engines.

The girl then drove the plane erratically around the runway before crashing it into a building, causing "substantial damage," Calderon said.

No passengers were on the plane and no injuries were reported.

"No passengers or commercial airlines were ever at risk in this incident," Calderon said. "The motive is still under investigation but there is no indication of any ties to domestic terrorism."

The police were called and arrested the girl at around 7:30 a.m, Calderon said. Officers found the girl "disoriented" and "uncooperative."

The crashed plane at Fresno Yosemite International Airport on Wednesday.
Airport officials are none the wiser as to how the teen managed to get into the plane and start the engines.

"That's still under investigation. We're not certain how she was able to accomplish those things," airport police chief Drew Bessinger told ABC30.

Security tape from Fresno Yosemite International Airport showing the plane crash on Wednesday.

The teen was booked into Fresno County Juvenile Hall, on suspicion of theft of an aircraft.


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