Doniphan man charged, accused of lying about government owned helicopters

Doniphan man charged, accused of lying about government owned helicopters

DONIPHAN, MO (KFVS) - A Doniphan man is charged with four federal counts of making false statements about two helicopters that are owned by the Department of Defense.

A federal grand jury indicted Lonnie Reid on April 21, 2017.

According to court documents, a special agent with the Department of Defense went to Doniphan in October 2015 to talk to Lonnie Reid about two helicopters that were stored at the Doniphan airport. The agent also executed a search warrant of Reid's property.

The Doniphan Airport Manager said that Reid lives near the airport and has access to it, but was never employed by the city or county.

Court documents show that there were two OH-58 Bell helicopters stored in Reid's hangar near the airport.

He reportedly told the agent that he'd purchased both of the helicopters from Dakota Air.

According to the indictment, one of those helicopters had been loaned to the Ripley County Sheriff's Office by the Department of Defense. Reid reportedly told the agent that the OH-58 Bell helicopter with serial number 71-20636 had been destroyed in a crash at the airport and that he'd put the wreckage in a dumpster near the Ripley County Courthouse.

Court documents show that Reid told the agent that the fuselage, or the main body section of the helicopter, was the only part of a Department of Defense-owned helicopter with serial number 68-16697 that he had sold. The special investigator said that Reid also sold the engine from the helicopter to Dakota Air for $20,000.

Reid pleaded not guilty to the charges against him in federal court on May 11. He posted $5,000 bond the same day.

He is due back in court in July.

Download the KFVS News app: iPhone | Android

Copyright 2017 KFVS. All rights reserved.