U.S. Air Force ‘White Top’ Helicopter Shot at Near Washington, D.C.

A UH-1N Huey ‘White Top’ dignitary support helicopter from the 1st Helicopter Squadron based at Joint Base Andrew in Washington, D.C. was shot at on Monday in nearby Virginia. According to the Air Force, a crewman was injured, and the helicopter was forced to make an emergency landing at Manassas Regional Airport, Virginia.

McClatchy reported that “the injured crew member, who was not identified, was treated at a hospital and released,” adding that the Air Force stated that – “Initial findings are that the helicopter was struck by a bullet resulting in a minor injury to an aircrew member and damage to the aircraft.”

According to the Air Force, the helicopter was flying about 1,000 feet off the ground, about 10 miles northwest of Manassas Regional Airport when it was shot at.

This incident is particularly significant since Joint Base Andrews is home to Air Force helicopter and jet fighter squadrons, as well as the presidential aircraft – Air Force One. McClatchy notes that the 1st Helicopter Squadron carries out “local airlift operations for senior military and civilian leaders, high-ranking dignitaries, distinguished visitors, Defense Support of Civil Authorities, and emergency medical evacuation.”

The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) quickly “dispatched Special Agents and its Evidence Response Team from Washington, D.C. to the Manassas Airport,” reported McClatchy, adding that the FBI stated:

The FBI Washington Field Office is working jointly with our law enforcement partners, including the Air Force Office of Special Investigations [OSI], to determine the circumstances surrounding the incident.

The FBI also asked that “anyone near this area at the time of the incident who may have information please call the FBI at 202-278-2000.”

Hopefully, the FBI and OSI can quickly locate and arrest the criminal, or criminals, who did this and bring them to swift justice.

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Paul Crespo

Paul Crespo is the Managing Editor of American Defense News. A defense and national security expert, he served as a Marine Corps officer and as a military attaché with the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) at US embassies worldwide. Paul holds degrees from Georgetown, London, and Cambridge Universities. He is also CEO of SPECTRE Global Risk, a security advisory firm, and President of the Center for American Defense Studies, a national security think tank.

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