Suspect pilot in 'Airplane Marijuana' case arrested in CA

HUNT COUNTY, TX (KLTV) - By Morgan Chesky - bio | email | Twitter

HUNT COUNTY, TX (KLTV) - Hunt County authorities say the man believed to be the pilot of the 'Marijuana Plane' is now in custody.

Fresno County authorities arrested Darin Fayne, 44, in California after a coordinated coast to coast search.

Authorities spent the last week tracking down the man who ditched a plane in a cotton field. It was a step by step process authorities took to connect the dots to Fayne.

Law enforcement agencies nationwide joined forces looking for Fayne who did not hesitate to get out of Texas.

The six Hunt County officers working the case started with the biggest piece of evidence, the drug filled plane. Inside, they found a cell phone belonging to Fayne and the plane's registration to a man in California without a pilot's license.

Hunt County turned to U.S. Marshals who started from Caddo Mills airport looking to California and Fayne's drug destination of Florida.

A tip led authorities to Fayne's hometown of Fresno, California where he was arrested.

"A lot of this is unusual for us," said Lt. Tommy Grandfield, a Hunt County investigator. "We haven't worked anything like this before that I know of...We're sending people to California to possible locations where he lived at and to identify his known associates and then to Florida where he could have possible been going to."

In addition to felony drug charges, Fayne also faces aggravated assault with a deadly weapon on a public servant.

An airplane stunt on a Greenville runway left a federal officer nearly being clipped by the plane's wing.

The story caught everyone's attention with drugs falling from the sky. Authorities found yet another bag last week. Hunt County said the five bags recovered and two in the plane should be the last of it. With Fayne's arrest, hopefully, no more drugs will be dropped anytime soon.

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