2 Atlanta cops die in helicopter crash

Nov. 4, 2012 at 9:34 PM

ATLANTA, Nov. 4 (UPI) -- Two Atlanta police officers died Saturday night when their helicopter crashed into power lines while hunting for a missing boy, the police department said.

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported the helicopter went down shortly before 11 p.m. near the intersection of Martin Luther King Jr. and Hamilton E. Holmes drives, near Interstate 20, in northwest Atlanta.

The two officers were identified as Richard J. Halford, 48, of Lithia Springs, who was a member of the department for 26 years, and Shawn A. Smiley, 40 of Lithonia, who joined the department two years ago, the newspaper said.

No one on the ground was injured.

A Georgia Power crew was brought in to deal with power lines brought down in the crash.

The Federal Aviation Administration and National Transportation Safety Board were investigating the cause of the accident.

Police said the missing 9-year-old boy was later found safe.

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