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Wreckage of CHP plane is found; pilot killed

May 7, 2010 |  9:43 pm

A California Highway Patrol observation plane crashed Friday in Imperial County, killing the pilot, the Federal Aviation Administration said.

The Cessna 206 was found about 12 miles northeast of Agua Caliente Springs near Split Mountain Road. The pilot was the only person aboard, the FAA said.

The plane had taken off Friday morning and was soon out of contact. Multiple law enforcement agencies from Imperial and Riverside counties were involved in the search.The plane had been enroute to conduct speed patrol above Interstate 8, the CHP said.

The wreckage was found shortly after 5 p.m.

The pilot was identified as Danny Benavides, a 13-year veteran of the CHP.

--Tony Perry in San Diego