Non-Profit Group Suspects Foul Play, Calls For Complete
A Piper Saratoga on approach to the
Akron-Canton Airport (CAK) about 6 pm Friday went down about three
miles short of the runway, taking the life of Michael Connell, the
pilot and sole occupant of the plane.
Nearby resident Taylor Fano heard the crash and said, "It blew
up and shook the ground a little bit. I was standing in the kitchen
and I looked out the window and all I saw was fire," the Akron
Beacon Journal reported.
"It took out the flagpole and the cement blocks surrounding the
flagpole like a little planter," Fano said. "It skidded across the
driveway and right in between a line of pine trees and a small
fence around an in-ground pool."
Capt. Lorin Geiser of the Greentown Fire Department said he
arrived on the scene about three minutes after the crash was
reported to 911 operators. The wrecked plane was fully engulfed in
flames, which were quickly extinguished.
The 1997 PA-32R-301T, registered to Richfield corporation
Sierra-November Aviation, was enroute from College Park, MD to
Akron on an IFR flight plan. Kristie Van Auken, spokeswoman for
Akron-Canton Airport, said the plane (file photo of type shown
below) was on final approach to Runway 23 when it went down, and
there were reports of freezing rain in the area at the time of the
As is customary, the National Transportation Safety Board and
the Federal Aviation Administration are investigating... but the
circumstances of the accident have already generated some
Non-profit group Velvet Revolution is suspicious of the
accident, and has demanded the Ohio Attorney General and the United
States Justice Department conduct a complete investigation into
Connell's activities to determine whether there was any foul play
in his death.
Connell, 45, was an IT expert in the current Bush
Administration. The group claims he was "directly implicated" in
the alleged rigging of George W. Bush's 2000 and 2004 election
results, under the direction of Karl Rove. The group claims Connell
was about to "tell all" about his work for Bush... and that threats
had been made against the lives of Connell and his wife,