LA County Coroner Identifies 3 Of 4 Victims Killed In Santa Monica Airport Plane Crash
SANTA MONICA (CBSLA.com) — The Los Angeles County Coroner Friday identified three of the four victims killed in a plane crash at the Santa Monica Airport.
Mark Benjamin, 63, of Malibu, 53-year-old Kyla Dupont of San Diego, 28-year-old Lauren Winkler of Irvine and a second male were aboard the twin-engine Cessna Citation that went off the runway Sept. 29 before it collided with a runway sign and crashed into a hangar, the Federal Aviation Administration said.
The hangar collapsed on the plane, which then caught on fire. Authorities said the blaze, which spread to two nearby hangars, burned at unusually high temperatures due to jet fuel. As a result, an unknown number of aircraft and vehicles were damaged.
The victims remains were recovered from the scene Tuesday, officials said. The coroner has yet to identify the third victim.
Charles Muttillo, Vice President of Morley Builders, a construction company founded in 1947 by Benjamin’s family, issued a statement Monday mentioning Benjamin’s son was also possibly on board.
“We are aware of a plane crash at Santa Monica Airport last night. While we do not have specific facts, we believe that our President and CEO, Mark Benjamin, and his son, Luke Benjamin, a Senior Project Engineer with us were on board. We are unable to issue a further statement at this time. We will provide you with more updates as soon as we learn of them. Thank you.”
The eight-passenger aircraft was reportedly registered to Benjamin.
It’s unclear what caused the plane’s pilot to lose control of the aircraft.