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Helicopter Crashes While Searching For Marijuana

Jim Finnel

Fallen Cannabis Warrior & Ex News Moderator
Capt. Kelly McClendon of the Polk County Sheriff’s Office, Cpl. David Doehla with the Georgia State Patrol and Joe Zebeau, a retired corporal with the GSP, were airlifted to Atlanta hospitals after their Bell Jet Ranger Model 406 helicopter crashed while on patrol about 2:45 p.m.

Doehla, the pilot, was in critical but stable condition at Grady Memorial Hospital in Atlanta on Tuesday evening, a Grady hospital spokesman said, while McClendon was in stable condition at Atlanta Medical Center, an AMC hospital spokeswoman said.

Zebeau was also at Grady with non-life-threatening injuries, a GSP spokesperson said.

The three were on patrol as part of the Georgia Governor’s Task Force searching for illegal marijuana plants growing in Polk County, said Al Sharp, deputy chief with the Polk County Sheriff’s Office.

The Task Force is made up of state and local law enforcement officers whose purpose is drug eradication in Georgia, said Senior Trooper Larry Schnall, with the GSP.

Cause of the crash had not been determined Tuesday evening, as officials awaited arrival of investigation teams from the National Transportation Safety Board and the Federal Aviation Administration.

The helicopter’s occupants “didn’t know what happened,” said Cpl. Johnny Moats of the Polk County Sheriff’s Office, who was on the phone with McClendon shortly after the crash occurred. “He said it just went down.”

Carl Crawford was in his home down the street from the crash site at the time. “(It) sounded like the wind gusted real hard, then all you heard was the chopping of the blade,” he said. “It just happened so quick.”

The crash occurred in woods off Culp Lake Road in Esom Hill.

John Branch, with Polk County Fire and Rescue, was one of the first responders. “It was just scattered,” he said. “There wasn’t much left of it.”

The aircraft was engulfed in flames following the crash, causing a small woods fire. A Georgia Forestry Commission crew plowed a break around the fire to contain it.

Several other state and county agencies, including the Polk County Police Department, Polk Emergency Management Services, Paulding County Sheriff’s Office, Haralson County Sheriff’s Office and other members of the Governor’s Task Force also responded to the scene.

A Georgia Forestry bulldozer cleared a path to the crash site in a wooded area on the west side of Polk County near Esom Hill. The fire was caused by the crash — seen from a distance. (Robin Hice)

News Hawk- User 420 MAGAZINE ® - Medical Marijuana Publication & Social Networking
Source: Rome News
Author: Heath Hooper
Contact: HHooper@RN-T.com
Copyright: 2007 MyWebPal.com
Website: Rome News - Tribune


New Member
can you say divine intervention? :laugh2:


New Member
:headbang:IMAO...I am glad that the men survived, but it sure made the system look stupid when they take their war tactics to the extent that they fly so early...more likely just another misplaced priority because of the gateway nonsense this government clings to w/ such religious fever....I'm talking USA...:hmmmm:Why does it make sense to these nuts to justify risking three mens lives, when New Orleans & Mississippi still have rebuilding needed and in PA why not send those state funds to social programs or something else like fighting METH?
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