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2 people, dog killed in plane crash south of Centennial Airport

The crash started a brush fire, but South Metro Fire said crews were able to get it under control near South Peoria Street and Ridgegate Parkway.

DOUGLAS COUNTY, Colo. — A small plane hit power lines and crashed, killing two people and a dog, in Lone Tree on Wednesday, said South Metro Fire Rescue (SMFR).

The crash victims, Antenor and Kathleen Velazco, both 73 years old, are from Jonesboro, GA were flying in the Lancair Evolution plane when it hit the power lines and crashed just before 2 p.m. Wednesday. 

The couple was on approach to Centennial Airport in Englewood after departing from Neosho, Missouri, according to the FAA.

The Douglas County Coroner's Office released the couple's identify on Thursday. 

According to 9NEWS aviation expert Greg Feith, the pilot reported an issue with the autopilot and was maneuvering at 6,500 feet when he apparently made a 360-degree turn.

Investigators will have to determine the nature of the autopilot malfunction and why the pilot was so low to the ground, Feith said.

In addition, Feith said the planed burned so badly in part because it is a single-engine turbo propeller airplane made from carbon fiber composite.

The crash started a brush fire, but SMFR said crews were able to get it under control near South Peoria Street and Ridgegate Parkway.

While the crash itself did not cause power in Lone Tree to go out, Xcel Energy said its crews had to cut the energy to the line at 10 p.m. so emergency crews could make powerline repairs.

Hundreds of Xcel Energy customers were told to prepare for a power outage Wednesday night. Power was restored by Thursday morning. The boundaries of the outage were Quebec Street to Chambers Road, and C-470 to Castle Pines Parkway.

"Xcel Energy crews are working quickly and safely with emergency crews on scene," said a statement from Xcel Energy. "Our thoughts are with those involved in the crash and their families.”

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