Two killed in Plane Crash Near Lakeland

BARTOW, Fla. (AP) - A twin-engine plane crashed 15 miles south of Lakeland Monday morning, killing both people on board, said.

The Polk County Sheriff's Office reports that the 1967 Piper Comanche plane left Lakeland Linder Regional Airport at about 8 am, and was seen by witnesses sputtering and crashing nose-first into the ground near the intersection of State Road 640 and US Highway 37.

The pilot and owner of the plane was identified as Armando Motta. His passenger was Robert Cunningham. The two were longtime friends and often flew together.

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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