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Susan Smith-Harmon

Susan Smith-Harmon

Small helicopter crashes in downtown Honolulu

Thursday, 09 May 2013 01:26 Published in National News

   HONOLULU (AP) — A small helicopter lost power and came crashing down on a busy downtown Honolulu street Wednesday afternoon, but no one was seriously injured, authorities said.

   "It's a pretty miraculous situation that no one was badly hurt by this," said Capt. Terry Seelig, a spokesman for the Honolulu Fire Department. "This is a pretty busy area."

   The helicopter was on a photography flight when it lost power, forcing a crash landing on Fort Street, which is home to a large apartment complex and Hawaii Pacific University. The area is usually full of university students and downtown office workers, and has a lot of vehicle and pedestrian traffic.

   The chopper ended up along a curb, badly damaging a parked car, Seelig said. A fire station is also on that street, so firefighters who heard the crash ran out to help.

   The pilot, Julia Link, told KITV everything seemed normal until all of the sudden it got quiet and the engine quit. Repeatedly training for this type of scenario helped her bring the helicopter to the ground, she said.

   "First I thought it was a joke and then, I was like 'Oh my God, this is for real," said the 30-year-old.

   She was grateful the problems developed when the aircraft — which she said was brand new — was 3,000 feet above ground as that gave her a lot of time to plan their descent.

   Link said she's glad everyone walked away alive and no one was seriously hurt.

   The 71 year old male passenger was treated at the scene for minor injuries to his head, Honolulu Emergency Services spokeswoman Shayne Enright said.

   The chopper was operated by Mauna Loa Helicopters. Representatives of the company couldn't immediately be reached for comment.

   Preliminary information indicates the Robinson R22 Beta had an engine failure, said Allen Kenitzer, spokesman for the Federal Aviation Administration.

   Detectives with the St. Louis Major Case Squad are looking for a suspect in the execution-style death of a Normandy man.  

   Police say 30 year old Markquette Nunn had been using a weed trimmer in the front yard of his home in the 7600 block of Bermuda Court about 12:45Wednesday afternoon when someone shot him in the back of the head.  

   A neighbor heard the shot and came outside just in time to see a man running from the scene.  Nunn was pronounced dead at the scene.  

   Police say Nunn shared the home with his girlfriend and their baby son, who were not home at the time of the shooting.  A friend who also lived in the home was inside when Nunn was shot.  He told police he heard the shot, then look outside to see Nunn collapsed in the yard.  

   Police say they have very little to go in so far.  Anyone with information is urged to call the Major Case Squad – via Normandy Police at 314-385-3300, ext. 3018.

Brentwood earns "poor" rating in state audit

Wednesday, 08 May 2013 07:14 Published in Around Town

   Missouri Auditor Tom Schweich says his audit of Brentwood city government revealed sloppy accounting and a lack of documentation at city hall.  Schweich says those factors were behind his rating the St. louis County suburb as "poor."

   The audit came about because of a citizen petition drive that began in 2011. Residents became concerned about the city's finances after former city administrator Chris Seemayer pleaded guilty to stealing $30,000 but continued to collect city benefits.

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