CLEARWATER — A Tampa man faces numerous charges after he crashed through a fence at St. Pete-Clearwater International Airport and boarded a U.S. Coast Guard plane early Saturday morning, the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office said.
Hamilton Herrera Moreno, 36, was arrested on charges of fleeing and eluding, trespassing, grand theft auto, burglary, criminal mischief and being a habitual traffic offender, deputies said.
Airport deputies were notified of a suspicious vehicle driving on the airport apron near parked commercial airliners about 4:48 a.m., according to the Sheriff’s Office. Deputies tried to stop the vehicle, but Moreno drove across the apron toward the U.S. Coast Guard station, investigators said.
Deputies pursued the vehicle until it crashed through a Coast Guard security gate. Moreno then stopped in a large hangar, fled on foot and entered a parked C-130 aircraft, according to the Sheriff’s Office. He reached the plane’s cockpit, where deputies took him into custody.
Moreno was taken to the Pinellas County Jail where he was being held Saturday with bail set at $24,150, records show. Deputies said federal charges are also pending against him.