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Air Force helicopter hit by gunfire while flying over Virginia, forced to make emergency landing


A crew member injured in the incident was treated and released from a hospital

Video screenshot of type of helicopter hit by gunfire, a UH-1N Huey (Image source: YouTube screenshot)

An Air Force helicopter was hit by gunfire Monday while flying over Virginia, damaging it and forcing it to make an emergency landing at a regional airport, officials told McClatchy DC. A crew member also was injured, the outlet said.

What are the details?

The UH-1N Huey helicopter — assigned to the 1st Helicopter Squadron at Joint Base Andrews — was flying about 1,000 feet off the ground about 10 miles northwest of Manassas Regional Airport when the incident occurred, the outlet said, citing an Air Force statement.

The injured crew member, who was not identified, was treated and released from a hospital, McClatchy said.

"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," the Air Force said, according to the outlet.

The Federal Bureau of Investigation is looking into the incident, McClatchy added.

The FBI "dispatched special agents and its Evidence Response Team to the Manassas Airport after receiving reports that a helicopter was shot at from the ground nearby," the FBI's Washington Field Office said in a statement, according to the outlet.

More from McClatchy:

Officials at Manassas Regional Airport said they received a call at about 12:20 p.m. alerting them that "a military helicopter was inbound and that paramedics were on the way," said airport operations officer Richard Allabaugh.

A second airport official said the injured Air Force crew member was taken to a local facility for treatment. The helicopter remained at the airport as an investigation was launched into the shooting incident.

"The FBI Washington Field Office is working jointly with our law enforcement partners, including the Air Force Office of Special Investigations, to determine the circumstances surrounding the incident. One individual in the helicopter sustained a non-threatening injury, for which he was treated and subsequently released from the hospital," the FBI said, according to the outlet, and added that "anyone near this area at the time of the incident who may have information please call the FBI at 202-278-2000."

Joint Base Andrews said it had no further details to release, McClatchy noted.

"The Office of Special Investigations is fully engaged with our FBI colleagues on this incident. OSI take threats to our Airmen and our resources very seriously. As this is an ongoing investigation, no further investigative details can be released at this time," Joint Base Andrews said, according the outlet.

Here's a clip of a UH-1N Huey helicopter making a landing:

USAF UH-1N Twin Huey Evening Arrival AVLyoutu.be

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