The names of three of the five people killed in an airplane crash near Mottsville Lane have been released by the Douglas County Sheriff's Office.
Minden resident Paul Dallas, 43, and Gardnerville residents Leia Denner, 40, and Brent Fahey, 30, were identified as passengers on board the aircraft that went down at about 4:10 p.m. on Saturday.
The sheriff's office is withholding the name of the 58-year-old Minden pilot pending notification of next of kin, as well as the name of a 30-year-old New Jersey man who is living and working at Kirkwood Ski Resort.
Investigators with the Federal Aviation Administration arrived on-scene at about 7:20 p.m., and began their preliminary investigation into the accident. They have since secured for the evening. Douglas County deputies are keeping an eye on the wreckage tonight until the FAA begins its recovery on Sunday.
The six-seat aircraft took off at about 4 p.m. from Minden-Tahoe Airport.
Pierini described the final moments before the twin-engine aircraft went down as reported by witnesses to the crash.
The plane flew south 200-300 feet above a branding party before crossing Mottsville Lane.
About 500 yards south of Mottsville, the plane pulled up, and then nosed over into the ground not far from a home on the end of Mottsville Meadows at about 4:10 p.m.
No one was in the home at the time of the crash, Pierini said.
East Fork Fire & Paramedics, Douglas County Sheriff's units and the Douglas County Sheriff's Search & Rescue responded and secured the scene.
Mottsville Meadows was blocked off, and onlookers asked not to park along Mottsville Lane.
Mottsville is the main route between Carson Valley and Kingsbury Grade, leading to Lake Tahoe.
According to National Transportation Safety Board records, this is the deadliest aircraft accident in Douglas County since the March 1, 1964 Paradise Airlines crash into Genoa Peak killed 85 passengers and crew.