Pilot asked to return to airport right before crash - KNOE 8 News; KNOE-TV; KNOE.com |

Pilot asked to return to airport right before crash

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ATLANTA (KNOE 8 News/AP) - Federal authorities investigating an airplane crash that killed two people say the pilot contacted an air traffic controller immediately after taking off from an airport near Atlanta, asking to return to the airport.

A preliminary report released this week by the National Transportation Safety Board says the pilot was given instructions to return to Fulton County Airport. The report says he didn't specify any possible problems on board, and no further transmissions were recorded before the Raytheon 390 Premier I plane crashed in northwest Atlanta Dec. 17.

Authorities say both people on board died in the crash. They were identified 67-year-old businessman Peter Mallen, a businessman who was the pilot, and 23-year-old Brittany McAuley, a former Emory University student from New York. The plane was en route to New Orleans.

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