Casper City Councilman Bruce Knell And Wife In Plane Accident In Utah

Casper City Councilman Bruce Knell confirmed to Cowboy State Daily shortly before going into surgery that he was in a plane crash. The local police chief said Knell may "have a broken back."

Clair McFarland

March 25, 20222 min read

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(Cowboy State Daily Staff)

A Casper City Councilman and his wife Stacy were injured Thursday when the airplane they were flying in crashed near St. George, Utah.

“I was in a plane crash,” Bruce Knell told Cowboy State Daily from St. George Regional Hospital on Friday. “In fact, I’m in the hospital now.”   

Knell cut the call short to undergo treatment for his injuries.   

A later text to his phone requesting follow-up was answered by a message stating “He is currently in surgery,” and that he would be out of surgery and in recovery later that day.   

Emergency personnel in Washington City, near St. George, were alerted Thursday to the crash of a small four-seat airplane carrying a man and woman, Washington City Police Chief Jason Williams confirmed in a phone interview.  

Upon discovery of the wreckage, the man reported lacerations and back pain; the woman reported arm and face lacerations with a possible broken jaw.  

Williams noted that the male in the plane was believed “possibly, to have a broken back due to the crash.”  

They were both conscious, but the pilot was unable to give details on the crash, said William.  

“According to what we were told by other airport personnel,” said Williams, “it looked like the plane had lost power, but we haven’t been able to confirm that, and we don’t have those specific details.”

The man and woman were initially taken to St. George Hospital, but Knell’s wife since has been transported to University Medical Center in Las Vegas due to the severity of her injuries.  

The plane crashed in what Williams called a “pretty barren” field about one mile southeast of St. George Regional Airport. The crash did not damage any residential property.

The Federal Aviation Administration is the investigative agency over the case.  

Casper City manager J. Carter Napier on Thursday expressed “sincere wishes” for the Knells’ “sustained health and recovery,” in a public statement confirming both husband and wife are hospitalized with “serious injuries.”  

Investigators were still on scene Friday, according to the Washington City Police Department.   

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Clair McFarland

Crime and Courts Reporter