this day in crime history: april 7, 1994

FedEx

On this date in 1994, FedEx employee Auburn Calloway attempted to hijack a company plane flying from Memphis, TN to San Jose, CA. Calloway, a flight crew member for FedEx, was a “deadheading” passenger on the flight. He had brought a guitar case on board that contained hammers and a spear gun. His plan was to use the hammers to subdue the crew, then to crash the plane so his family could collect on a $2.5 million life insurance policy. He chose hammers as his weapons so that the crew’s injuries would be consistent with the injuries that would be sustained in an air crash. The spear gun was to be used in case the hammers didn’t get the job done.

When Calloway attacked the crew, they fought back and managed to overpower him. They were able to land back in Memphis, where Calloway was taken into custody.

Auburn Calloway was charged with air piracy and attempted murder. He was convicted and sentenced to two consecutive life terms. He is currently incarcerated in the federal prison in Lompoc, CA. The flight’s crew, Dave Sanders, James Tucker, and Andrew Peterson, were awarded the Gold Medal for heroism by the Air Line Pilots Association. Due to their injuries, none of the crew members was able to return to commercial flying.

Further reading:

Wikipedia – Federal Express Flight 705

Mental Floss – True Crime: The Man Who Hijacked a Cargo Jet

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this day in crime history: february 22, 1974

samuel-byck

On this date in 1974, unemployed salesman Samuel Byck attempted to hijack a DC-9 at the Baltimore-Washington International Airport. His intended destination: Washington DC. His plan: Crash the plane into the White House in order to kill President Richard Nixon. Byck shot and killed an airport security guard before he boarded the plane. Once he was on the plane, he shot the pilot and copilot when they told him they couldn’t take off until the wheel blocks were removed. The pilot survived, but the copilot later died from his wounds. Byck was shot and wounded by police. He committed suicide before he could be taken into custody.

Further reading:

IMDB page for the movie The Assassination of Richard Nixon

IMDB page for the movie The Plot to Kill Nixon

Wikipedia article on Samuel Byck

this day in crime history: november 24, 1971

db-cooper

On this date in 1971, a man calling himself Dan Cooper hijacked a Boeing 727 airliner. He received $200,000 in ransom and ordered the plane back into the air. He parachuted out somewhere over southwestern Washington state and disappeared. In February of 1980, $5880 of the money was found by 8 year old Brian Ingram near Vancouver, WA. Cooper’s true identity and whereabouts, and the whereabouts of the rest of the ransom money, remain unknown to this day.

Further reading:

Crime Museum – D.B. Cooper

Wikipedia – D.B. Cooper

this day in crime history: april 7, 1994

FedEx

On this date in 1994, FedEx employee Auburn Calloway attempted to hijack a company plane flying from Memphis, TN to San Jose, CA. Calloway, a flight crew member for FedEx, was a “deadheading” passenger on the flight. He had brought a guitar case on board that contained hammers and a spear gun. His plan was to use the hammers to subdue the crew, then to crash the plane so his family could collect on a $2.5 million life insurance policy. He chose hammers as his weapons so that the crew’s injuries would be consistent with the injuries that would be sustained in an air crash. The spear gun was to be used in case the hammers didn’t get the job done.

When Calloway attacked the crew, they fought back and managed to overpower him. They were able to land back in Memphis, where Calloway was taken into custody.

Auburn Calloway was charged with air piracy and attempted murder. He was convicted and sentenced to two consecutive life terms. He is currently incarcerated in the federal prison in Victorville, CA. The flight’s crew, Dave Sanders, James Tucker, and Andrew Peterson, were awarded the Gold Medal for heroism by the Air Line Pilots Association. Due to their injuries, none of the crew members was able to return to commercial flying.

Further reading:

Wikipedia – Federal Express Flight 705

Mental Floss – True Crime: The Man Who Hijacked a Cargo Jet

this day in crime history: february 22, 1974

samuel-byck

On this date in 1974, unemployed salesman Samuel Byck attempted to hijack a DC-9 at the Baltimore-Washington International Airport. His intended destination: Washington DC. His plan: Crash the plane into the White House in order to kill President Richard Nixon. Byck shot and killed an airport security guard before he boarded the plane. Once he was on the plane, he shot the pilot and copilot when they told him they couldn’t take off until the wheel blocks were removed. The pilot survived, but the copilot later died from his wounds. Byck was shot and wounded by police. He committed suicide before he could be taken into custody.

Further reading:

IMDB page for the movie The Assassination of Richard Nixon

IMDB page for the movie The Plot to Kill Nixon

Wikipedia article on Samuel Byck

this day in crime history: november 24, 1971

db-cooper

On this date in 1971, a man calling himself Dan Cooper hijacked a Boeing 727 airliner. He received $200,000 in ransom and ordered the plane back into the air. He parachuted out somewhere over southwestern Washington state and disappeared. In February of 1980, $5880 of the money was found by 8 year old Brian Ingram near Vancouver, WA. Cooper’s true identity and whereabouts, and the whereabouts of the rest of the ransom money, remain unknown to this day.

Further reading:

Crime Museum – D.B. Cooper

Wikipedia – D.B. Cooper

this day in crime history: april 7, 1994

FedEx

On this date in 1994, FedEx employee Auburn Calloway attempted to hijack a company plane flying from Memphis, TN to San Jose, CA. Calloway, a flight crew member for FedEx, was a “deadheading” passenger on the flight. He had brought a guitar case on board that contained hammers and a spear gun. His plan was to use the hammers to subdue the crew, then to crash the plane so his family could collect on a $2.5 million life insurance policy. He chose hammers as his weapons so that the crew’s injuries would be consistent with the injuries that would be sustained in an air crash. The spear gun was to be used in case the hammers didn’t get the job done.

When Calloway attacked the crew, they fought back and managed to overpower him. They were able to land back in Memphis, where Calloway was taken into custody.

Auburn Calloway was charged with air piracy and attempted murder. He was convicted and sentenced to two consecutive life terms. He is currently incarcerated in the federal prison in Victorville, CA. The flight’s crew, Dave Sanders, James Tucker, and Andrew Peterson, were awarded the Gold Medal for heroism by the Air Line Pilots Association. Due to their injuries, none of the crew members was able to return to commercial flying.

Further reading:

Wikipedia – Federal Express Flight 705

Mental Floss – True Crime: The Man Who Hijacked a Cargo Jet