Hayden Man Indicted for Shooting at Historic Biplane
|U.S. Attorney’s Office July 31, 2012|
BIRMINGHAM—A federal grand jury today indicted a Hayden man for shooting at a restored biplane that was landing at a private airfield beside the man’s home, announced U.S. Attorney Joyce White Vance and FBI Special Agent in Charge Patrick J. Maley.
A one-count federal indictment filed in U.S. District Court charges Jason Allen McCay, 36, with attempted interference with an aircraft. McCay willfully attempted to interfere with the authorized operation of an aircraft flying in the United States, and he did so with reckless disregard for the safety of human life, according to the indictment.
McCay was arrested on a criminal complaint in the case on July 19. According to the complaint and a supporting affidavit by a federal air marshal, McCay was seen shooting a long-gun at an aircraft that was landing on Campbell Field, a private grass airstrip in Hayden, on June 22. McCay attempted to damage, destroy, disable, and wreck the plane, the complaint charged.
The aircraft was a restored 1943 Boeing Stearman Biplane. It was being flown on test flights over Campbell Field, which was built in 1963 by Fred Campbell, who owns the plane. About 20 witnesses were present at the field on June 22 in celebration of the historic plane being restored to flight standards, according to the affidavit.
On the third test flight that day, witnesses heard several gunshots as the plane was coming in for a landing. One witness reported seeing McCay fire at the plane with a long gun, according to the affidavit.
The FBI and the Department of Homeland Security investigated the case. It is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Michael Whisonant Sr.
The public is reminded that an indictment contains only charges. It is the government’s responsibility to prove a defendant guilty beyond a reasonable doubt at trial.