- The Washington Times - Friday, March 13, 2009

RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) - A man accused of rape kidnapped his daughter, stole a small plane and buzzed a major city before crashing into the parking lot of a mall, killing himself and his 5-year-old child, police said Friday.

Officials said no one was injured on the ground.

Kleber Barbosa da Silva argued with his wife and forced her from a moving car Thursday afternoon near the central state capital of Goiania, then fled with their daughter, said a Goiania police official who spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to talk about the case.

The wife was hospitalized in critical condition.

Silva drove about 150 kilometers (90 miles) to a small airplane club in the city of Luziania and told club officials he wanted to take an aerial tour with his daughter. Once inside the single-engine Embraer Tupi, he brandished a pistol and forced the pilot out while the plane was on a runway.

Silva _ whose piloting experience is not known _ then took off with his daughter.

Authorities made brief contact with Silva after he was airborne.

“He wanted to cause a bigger tragedy, to cause casualties at the mall, too,” police investigator Jorge Moreira told the Estado de S. Paulo newspaper.

Two Brazilian air force planes and a military police helicopter pursued Silva but did not intercept him.

Brazilian television showed video of the plane flying fast and low over the Goiania airport, nearby neighborhoods and a hospital. Shortly afterward, the plane crashed into the parking lot of the Flamboyant Shopping Mall, instantly killing Silva and his daughter, a little more than two hours after he stole the plane.

Authorities were trying to determine if the plane ran out of fuel or if Silva deliberately crashed.

Police said Silva was accused of raping a 13-year-old girl on Monday and a warrant was issued for his arrest.

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