AUSTIN, Texas – A man upset with the Internal Revenue Service set fire to his home, got into his small plane and crashed it Thursday into a multistory office building that houses federal tax employees, authorities said.
At least two people were injured in the crash and a third person who worked in the building was unaccounted for, fire officials said. The crash caused a fire that sent black smoke billowing from the seven-story Echelon Building.
Federal law enforcement officials said they were investigating whether the pilot crashed on purpose in an effort to blow up IRS offices.
About 190 IRS employees work in the building, and IRS spokesman Richard C. Sanford the agency was trying to account for all of its workers.
The pilot, listed in FAA and property records as Andrew Joseph Stack 3rd of Austin and identified by law enforcement sources as Joseph Stack, apparently had a long-running dispute with the IRS.
Stack apparently left a long message, dated Thursday, on his company Web site outlining problems with the IRS and said violence “is the only answer.”
“If you’re reading this, you’re no doubt asking yourself, ‘Why did this have to happen?’ The simple truth is that it is complicated and has been coming for a long time,” the note begins.
A senior law enforcement official told NBC’s Pete Williams the saga began Thursday morning, when police received a domestic disturbance call at Stack’s house. When they responded, they discovered that the man had lit a fire in his house and fled. They said he went to the Georgetown Municipal Airport, got into his small plane and took off.
A short time later, the plane crashed into the office building about 30 miles away. Federal authorities said they did not know whether the man crashed the plane intentionally, though they said it was a distinct possibility, the official told NBC.
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Article courtesy of: msnbc.com