- - Sunday, September 19, 2010


Helicopter filming Audi test run crashes

DENVER — A helicopter filming a driverless Audi on a test run crashed Friday about a mile below the summit of Pikes Peak, injuring the four people onboard, the sheriff’s office said.

The crash occurred sometime before 7:30 a.m. near the winding roadway leading to the top of the mountain, which is about 14,110 feet above sea level. El Paso County sheriff’s spokeswoman Teresa Murphy said the pilot suffered critical injuries and was taken to a hospital in a second helicopter. She said the three other passengers suffered injuries that were not life threatening. No names were released.

Miss Murphy said the cause of the crash is unknown and that the Federal Aviation Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board will lead the investigation.

Brad Stertz, a spokesman for German automaker Audi, said the helicopter was carrying a crew that was filming a driverless Audi on the road to the summit of the mountain. He said the test drive for the car Friday was part of a project with Stanford University, which helped create the technology for the driverless vehicle, named “Shelley.”

Dan Stober, a Stanford spokesman, said the automaker hired the film crew and that no one from the university was among those injured. The car was not involved in the crash.


Dad threatens daughter’s tormenters

SANFORD — A father furious about the bullying of his 13-year-old daughter with cerebral palsy stormed onto a school bus and threatened the children who teased her, deputies in Florida said.

The girl had to be hospitalized because of stress from the confrontation. The father, James Willie Jones, was arrested Thursday for storming onto the bus two weeks ago, He was later released on bail. He hopes to apologize to the children, said his attorney, Natalie Jackson.

Mr. Jones boarded the school bus on Sept. 3 because several boys were allegedly bullying his daughter, according to the sheriff’s office report. He told deputies the boys placed an open condom on his daughter’s head, smacked her on the back of her head, twisted her ear and shouted rude comments at her, the report said.

Video surveillance from the bus shows Mr. Jones asking his daughter to point out the students accused of harassing her. Mr. Jones is heard threatening those who bully his daughter, and he also threatens the bus driver.

Mr. Jones then steps off the bus. Some children are heard laughing.


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