Trevor Jacob, a 30-year-old YouTuber, has been sentenced to 6 months in prison for deliberately crashing his plane for a video and then lying to US investigators, reports BBC. The incident occurred in December 2021 when Jacob, a former Olympic snowboarder, jumped out of a plane over the Los Padres Mountains in California while filming an event. The video, which was part of the sponsorship deal, went viral and received millions of views.
Earlier this year, Jacob pleaded guilty to destroying and concealing information to obstruct a federal investigation. Federal prosecutors in California said that Jacob likely committed the crime to gain social media and news coverage for personal and financial gain, emphasizing that such behavior should not go unpunished.
During the flight, which began at the Santa Barbara airport, Jacob had cameras, a parachute and a selfie stick. The author jumped out of the plane with a parachute and filmed it descending and crashing. The camera was mounted on the plane itself, so the audience could see the whole process of the crash. After the plane crashed, Jacob went to the crash site, retrieved the footage, and uploaded a video called “I Crashed My Airplane” to YouTube, which contained an advertisement for a wallet company.
The video caused skepticism among viewers because Jacob already had a parachute behind him and made no attempt to land the plane safely. He reported the crash to the National Transportation Safety Board, but later claimed that he did not know where the plane crashed. Nevertheless, he returned to the scene by helicopter, picked up and transported the wreckage, and later destroyed it.
The video was subsequently removed from YouTube after it had gained almost three million views, and then restored. It now has 4.4 million views.