Pilot Crashes Jet Into House


Image: KUTV

A professional pilot, Duane Youd, stole his employer’s Cessna Citation 525 jet and deliberately crashed it into his own house, in Payson, Utah, about 2:30 a.m. Monday, according to police reports. Youd’s wife and a boy, who were in the house, escaped without injury, but he died in the crash. Youd’s relation to the boy was unclear, according to Payson Police Sgt. Noemi Sandoval. The house was heavily damaged and the jet was destroyed by fire. Youd, age 47, had been arrested about 7:30 p.m. on Sunday in a nearby canyon after witnesses called police to report he was assaulting his wife. He was held in a local jail for several hours and then released on bail. The couple had gone to the canyon to talk over their problems, and reportedly had been drinking, according to Sandoval.

Within hours of his release, Youd drove to the Spanish Fork-Springville Airport, about 15 miles north of his home, and took off in his employer’s jet. He flew directly to his neighborhood and smashed into the house, Sandoval said. The jet clipped a nearby shed, which could have altered the jet’s trajectory. “We don’t know what his ultimate goal is, whether he meant to hit [the house] low like he did or he meant to hit it higher,” Sandoval said. “The lucky thing for us, if anything, in this whole situation is that we have destruction of property and we have one male deceased, but it could have been so much worse than what it was.” Court records show Youd had previously been charged with disorderly conduct after a domestic violence incident in April, and was released on probation and ordered to attend counseling.