Fighter jets escort small plane out of DC

(AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)
(AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)

WASHINGTON (AP) — Authorities say two F-16 fighter jets escorted a small airplane out of restricted airspace in Washington, an apparently inadvertent intrusion that prompted evacuations at the U.S. Capitol and surrounding buildings.

North American Aerospace Defense Command spokesman Master Sgt. Chuck Marsh says jets escorted the plane to an airport in Mount Airy, North Carolina, where it landed Saturday afternoon. Secret Service agents met the plane there and interviewed the pilot. Transportation Security Administration spokesman Ross Feinstein wrote on Twitter that it appeared the pilot was just confused. The plane had departed from Westfield, Massachusetts.

U.S. Capitol Police say the Capitol and surrounding office buildings were evacuated about 1:30 p.m. Authorities say the Supreme Court and the Library of Congress were also evacuated, but that security at the White House was not affected.


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