Main Street back open as plane crash investigation continues

WTNH Report It/ Frank Crandall

EAST HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH) — Just what were the motives behind a small plane crash Tuesday afternoon near Pratt and Whitney in East Hartford?

There were numerous questions for officials today at an East Hartford press conference.  Was it linked to terrorism?  Was it a suicide?  All that the National Transportation and Safety Board and East Hartford Police would say is that it was intentional.

“Every indication is that this plane crash was intentional,” said Lt. Joshua Litwin of the East Hartford Police.  “I want to be crystal clear the circumstances beyond that are still being investigated. The crash the pilot what the circumstances of it being intentional all windows are open at this point.”

Federal, local and state officials from the NTSB, FBI, East Hartford Police, State Police are working to figure out why the twin engine plane crashed. Federal Investigators are looking into the possibility the pilot and student were fighting in the cockpit as the plane crashed.

“The explosion was just enormous a 30 or 40 foot high fireball, I thought no one can survive this,” said Steve Young who was standing close by when it happened.

Inside the plane was a flight instructor named Arian Prevalla. He survived the crash and is in fair condition at Bridgeport Hospital. 

According to ABC News, a student pilot in the plane, Feras Freitekh did not survive.  Freitekh is a 28-year-old Jordanian National.  According to CNN, the instructor and student were struggling before the plane crashed. The student was reportedly frustrated with his family and said he was being forced to become a pilot.

Today, investigators removed the body from the plane.  The plane itself was also taken away.

After yesterday’s crash, the power was cut forcing some businesses to close like Monro Muffler, Brake and Service.  Today the power was back on and the repair shop was open.

“We were doing our daily business, when we heard a loud bang,” said Tony Sanzo of Monro Muffler, Brake and Service in East Hartford.  “Then we saw some flames, some smoke, a lot of people running in that area.  It was kind of scary.”

To find out more about why the student may have crashed the plane into the ground, the FBI served a search warrant at the Hartford apartment house where the student lived.

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