UPDATED: Police arrest pilot of plane that crashed at Mesquite airport

A small jet burns after crashing at the Mesquite Municipal Airport, Mesquite, Nevada, July 17, 2019 | Photo courtesy of Mesquite Fire Department, St. George News

ST. GEORGE — Mesquite Police have arrested the pilot of the plane that crash-landed at the Mesquite Municipal Airport in Nevada Wednesday evening.

A small jet burns after crashing at the Mesquite Municipal Airport, Mesquite, Nevada, July 17, 2019 | Photo courtesy of Collen McCleve McCashland, St. George News

Sometime around 7 p.m. PDT (8 p.m. MDT), an aircraft described as a small jet crashed at the airport, Mesquite Fire Capt. Spencer Lewis told St. George News on Wednesday.

The fire was largely extinguished within an hour, he said, though some metal bits from the jet were still smoldering.

The pilot was the sole occupant of the aircraft and appeared to be uninjured, Lewis said at the time.

As of Wednesday night, the cause of the crash had yet to be determined, but the Mesquite Police Department sent out a press statement early Thursday morning saying that officers determined the pilot of the plane was under the influence of alcohol and that he had been placed in custody.

Ryan Dashiell booking photo courtesy of the Mesquite Police Department, St. George News

According to the press statement, Ryan Dashiell, 41, of Spokane, Washington, was arrested for suspicion of operating an aircraft while under the influence of intoxicating liquor, a gross misdemeanor.

Due to the gross misdemeanor charge, Dashiell will be transported to Clark County Detention Center. 

The statement continued to say that the Mesquite Police Department is cooperating with the Federal Aviation Administration during this ongoing investigation and that further updates will be released at a later time.

Both the Mesquite Fire and Police departments were engaged in an active shooter exercise at the local high school when they were alerted to the jet crash and fire at the airport, Lewis said Wednesday.

Updated July 18 at 7:30 a.m. to reflect arrest information.

Email: mkessler@stgnews.com

Twitter: @MoriKessler

Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2019, all rights reserved.

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