Small Helicopter Lands On US Capitol Grounds, Pilot In Custody (VIDEO)

A small helicopter landed on the West Lawn of the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday, according to numerous reports.

The pilot of the helicopter is in custody, according to CNN, and the U.S. Capitol police are investigating the incident.

“The U.S. Capitol Police is investigating a gyrocopter with a single occupant that has landed on the grassy area of the West Lawn of the U.S. Capitol,” Capitol Police Lt. Kimberly Schneider told WJLA. “The U.S. Capitol Police continues to investigate with one person detained and temporary street closures in the immediate area.”

According to the Tampa Bay Times, Doug Hughes, a postal service employee from Ruskin, Florida, planned on flying his gyrocopter to the U.S. Capitol to deliver letters to Congress, urging members to act on campaign finance reform.

Watch an MSNBC clip of the gyrocopter:

According to the Tampa Bay Times, the Secret Service contacted Hughes about his plan last year, but did not make an arrest or attempt to contact him at a later date.

Hughes told the Times that he knew his plan was risky, and that he might lose his job, among other things, but he said he believed that the Secret Service would realize he wasn’t a serious threat to the Capitol.

“I don’t believe that the authorities are going to shoot down a 61-year-old mailman in a flying bicycle,” he said. “I don’t have any defense, okay, but I don’t believe that anybody wants to personally take responsibility for the fallout.”

Hughes decided to fly a gyrocopter because was the least threatening way for him to reach the Capitol.

“This is as transparent a vehicle that I could come up with,” Hughes said. “You can literally see through it.”

Read more about Doug Hughes at the Tampa Bay Times.

Watch a video of the gyrocopter flying toward the Capitol via the Associated Press:

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