Trending Topics

Video: FAA investigating after low-flying police chopper causes ruckus at Pa. tailgate

The chopper was dispatched after the crowd assaulted a trooper and police horses


By Police1 Staff

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — State police responding to reports of a rowdy tailgate at Penn State said they were forced to dispatch a helicopter after two police horses were assaulted and a trooper injured.

The incident is now being investigated by the FAA and internally by state police.

ABC27 reported that students were angered after the helicopter flew low enough over the crowd that it blew over tents and tables.

“[One friend] got his car scratched and a lot of people’s tents were destroyed,” Paul Fortino, who was at the tailgate, told ABC27. “I lost hundreds of dollars of food, and I know one kid actually got hit in the head with a tent.”

In a statement released on their Facebook page, officials said they are “aware of, fully cooperating with, an FAA investigation” about the incident on Sept. 29.

State police are also conducting their own internal investigation.

“There was no intent by the pilot or supervisors on the ground to disturb property, and the department regrets any damage caused as a result.

Safety is the top priority of the Pennsylvania State Police Aviation Unit, which flew 1,841 missions in service to the commonwealth in 2017. The fleet is comprised of nine helicopters and five fixed-wing aircraft.”

ABC27 reported that Reed added that when officials noticed the disturbance by the helicopter, they pulled up to a higher altitude.