The pilot of a Missouri State Highway Patrol helicopter was killed in a crash in a residential subdivision in the St. Louis area this morning. No one on the ground was injured.
The pilot, Missouri State Highway Patrol Sgt. Joe Schuengel, age 47 was a 17-year veteran of the patrol.
Sgt. Schuengel was the only person on board at the time of the crash and he was killed on impact. The helicopter had been assigned to traffic enforcement.
The highway patrol said the helicopter came down on a street and did not hit any houses. The cause of the crash is unknown at this time and FAA investigators are on their way to the scene.
The helicopter was working speeding enforcement above Interstate 55 in Jefferson County this morning and was returning to Spirit of St. Louis Airport in Chesterfield when it crashed about 11 a.m.
Our thoughts and Prayers go out to his Family and to the Missouri Highway Patrol.
Gov. Jay Nixon ordered flags at all Missouri State Highway Patrol facilities to be immediately lowered to half-staff this afternoon.