Two people were killed when a helicopter crashed in Albemarle County, Virginia, on Saturday, according to state police.
The crash occurred near a residence on Old Farm Road by Birdwood Golf Course, about seven miles from the site of a violent white supremacy rally in downtown Charlottesville where at least one demonstrator was killed.
Virginia state police are investigating the helicopter crash. No one on the ground was reported to be injured.
Witnesses claimed the helicopter belonged to the Virginia state police. The Federal Aviation Administration also said that the helicopter belonged to the state police, according to The New York Times.
However, state police officials told The Daily Progress, a Charlottesville-area newspaper, that they couldn’t confirm those reports. Hours after the crash, President Donald Trump tweeted his condolences to the “families & fellow officers of the VA State Police who died today,” suggesting that the crash did involve a police aircraft, though officials have not yet publicly identified the victims.
It is still unclear if the helicopter and the Charlottesville riots are related.
Virginia’s governor and Charlottesville’s city manager mentioned the two fatalities during a press conference about Saturday’s riots, but did not provide any details of the helicopter crash and only made references to the car crash that killed one woman at the rally.
“Today was a very sad day for our great commonwealth, the city of Charlottesville,” Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe said. “We know now that there were three fatalities today, in addition to many individuals that have been hurt.”
“Hate came to our town today,” city manager Maurice Jones said during the conference. “Unfortunately, as we went through this day, we had folks who came here and caused mayhem, chaos and mischief and it resulted in three fatalities here in the city of Charlottesville.”