Small Plane Crashes in Field Near Denver, 1 Dead

A small plane has crashed in an empty field near a shopping center south of Denver, leaving one person dead.

Douglas County Sheriff's Deputy Chad Teller said the victim of the Saturday afternoon crash was believed to be the pilot, the only person believed to be aboard. Teller said his department had no reports of anyone on the ground being injured. He said it was not yet clear from where the plane took off or where it was headed.

Centennial Airport spokeswoman Deborah Smith says the pilot of the craft had been in touch with the tower shortly before taking off from the airport at about 2:30 p.m. The crash was minutes later.

Federal Aviation Administration spokesman Allen Kenitzer says the plane was a Sonerai, a type of aircraft designed to be built in a home workshop. Kenitzer says the plane sustained substantial damage.

Kenitzer says the FAA and the National Transportation and Safety Board are investigating.