Plane missing from Mesa airport found crashed

Plane missing from Mesa airport found crashed

CREATED Sep 15, 2012

Web Producer: Taylor Avey

MESA, Ariz. (AP) - The Civil Air Patrol says a plane missing from a flight school in Mesa since Thursday has been found crashed in a box canyon northwest of Payson.

Civil Air Patrol incident commander Paul Rehman says the aircraft carrying three people was spotted by a Department of Public Safety helicopter crew at about 8:30 a.m. Saturday. The site is rugged and the helicopter could not land. A Gila County sheriff's search and rescue team is headed to the site.

Rehman says the aircraft is not intact and the chances anyone survived appear slim.

The single-engine Piper operated by CAE Global Academy left Mesa's Falcon Field Thursday afternoon headed for Winslow.

The Civil Air Patrol used radar tracks and cell phone signals to find the plane's last known position.

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