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Pilot Who Flew Too Close to Santa Monica Pier Violates Probation

David Riggs was convicted of recklessly operating an aircraft in November 2008. His probation was revoked Monday after he failed to complete 60 days of community service.

The pilot convicted of flying a small military trainer recklessly close to the in the fall of 2008 was ordered Monday to perform 20 additional days of community service after he was found to have violated his probation, the Los Angeles Times reports.

A Los Angeles County Superior Court commissioner said David G. Riggs could be sent back to jail if he doesn't complete the service, the newspaper reported.

In June 2010, Riggs was sentenced to 60 days of community service and was fined $900. He was also ordered to serve three years probation and 60 days in jail. He ended up serving one day in Los Angeles County jail because of overcrowding and failed to complete the community service, according to the Times.

Riggs was convicted in June 2010 of recklessly operating an aircraft, a rarely used provision of the California Public Utilities Code. Prosecutors accused him of making low-level passes over Santa Monica Beach and the Santa Monica Pier on Nov. 6, 2008, flying an Aero Vodochody L-39 Albatros, a military jet trainer that was popular in the Soviet bloc during the Cold War.

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Richard B June 27, 2012 at 12:59 AM
Time to close the airport for good. There are too many of these cowboy pilots endangeriing the lives of the residents. When will Santa Monica City Council get a back bone and realize the residents no longer want this polluting and dangerous airport. But I guess as long as government officials keep using it we will never get it closed. The FAA seem to do want ever they feel like even tho they know the airport is too close to homes and has huge jets using the runways that should not be allowed.
Richard B June 27, 2012 at 01:04 AM
So when will Santa Monica allow Southwest Airlines to use the airport ? The jets are more frequent and louder than ever. What exactly is the limit on allowing these huge jets with 15-20 seats - more like a commercial plane. I certainly hope The City Council does not just ban flight schools or pay them to fly somewhere else. That is not the solution, only a merger attempt to pretend they care. Close SMO in 20152
an interested observer June 27, 2012 at 02:09 AM
BTW, DICK, the pilot was flying out of (and based at) Van Nuys airport. So it must be Van Nuys' fault, right?
emanon June 28, 2012 at 07:38 PM
I hate to tell you but the fact this pilot did this at the Santa Monica pier has NOTHING to do with Santa Monica airport. He flew out of Van Nuys and that plane is STILL at Van Nuys.
emanon June 28, 2012 at 07:40 PM
The guy flew out of Van Nuys and the plane is STILL at Van Nuys. This has nothing to do with Santa Monica airport. Well except that part where the pilot in this stunt has his other plane (not a jet) based at SMO now.

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