Pilot in 2010 Burke County crash linked to Texas pot plane

A man who parachuted from a small plane before it crashed last year in Burke County has been arrested in Texas as the pilot of a plane abandoned at a small southeast Texas airstrip with about 100 pounds of marijuana on board.


A Waller County Sheriff’s Office statement says deputies and federal Homeland Security agents arrested 33-year-old Barrington Carl Slack late Monday afternoon outside an Italian restaurant in the Houston suburb of Humble.

Slack, of Lithonia in suburban Atlanta, was booked into the Waller County Jail in Hempstead, about 50 miles northwest of Houston. No bond has been set for the felony marijuana possession charge. Jail records list no hometown or attorney for Slack.

The twin-engine plane was found abandoned Nov. 21 after landing and skidding off the runway at Houston Executive Airport in Brookshire in Waller County, about 35 miles west of Houston.

On Oct. 21, 2010, Slack parachuted from a Rockwell International 112-TC plane near Waynesboro, Ga.

Slack told investigators he had to jump because the plane’s directional controls stopped working and he could not complete the landing before running out of fuel and daylight, according to a report released Nov. 8 by the National Transportation Safety Board.

The NTSB investigation concluded that no mechanical problems existed before the accident. Slack was flying from Covington Municipal Airport in Covington, Ga., to Jim Hamilton L.B. Owens Airport in Columbia.

Four days before the crash, Slack received parachute training at a Monroe, Ga., parachuting school. According to the school owner, the pilot showed up wearing a military flight suit and boots and carrying a parachute.

When the instructor asked why the pilot needed an emergency parachute, Slack said he was a Marine flying L39 jets out of Dobbins Air Force Base.

“The only thing I thought strange was he had not gone to jump school and stated it was not required for the pilots,” the owner said in the report.

A search of Marine Corps records at a request by The Augusta Chronicle found he served in the military branch, but not as a pilot.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.


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