The Associated Press is reporting that a helicopter crash that killed two in Charlottesville, Virginia, was connected to the “Unite the Right” rally that was held there. However, according to reports, Virginia State Police did not say what the connection was.
Geller said the cause of the crash is still under investigation and that the FAA and NTSB had been notified, standard procedure for aircraft crashes.
“At 4:54 Saturday afternoon, Virginia State Police were notified of a helicopter crash in Albemarle County,” Geller said, standing a few hundred yards from the fatal crash site. “Albemarle County police and fire responded first. They located the wreckage of a helicopter in the woods near a residence off Old Farm Road, at the very end of the roadway. It was fully engulfed. And at this time we do have two confirmed fatalities. State law in Virginia says that the Virginia State Police has to investigate all air craft crashes so that’s why we responded to the scene.
Geller said she would not identify the victims or the owner of the helicopter. She said the downed aircraft was not the VSP helicopter seen circling above Saturday’s alt-right, white supremacist rally in downtown Charlottesville, a gathering that turned violent when a car was driven into a group of counter protesters, killing one and injuring 19.
Multiple reports, however, are saying that the two fatalities are state police troopers. However, according to one Virginia journalist, the helicopter was not a part of the police coverage of the rally.
Police say two fatalities in helicopter crash. It was not part of unite the right rally police coverage.
— Dan Schutte (@schuttedan) August 12, 2017
This does not appear to be a contradiction of the state police report, but it does raise questions as to what caused the crash and how it was tied to the rally.
We’ll keep you updated when the cause of the crash has been released.