Content creator who crashed his plane threatened with 20 years in prison

A YouTube content creator who also works as a pilot faces up to 20 years in prison after voluntarily crashing his plane after escaping during a flight and then posting a video of the incident online, US authorities said Friday. In the nearly three-million-time video titled "My plane crashed," the YouTuber films himself during the flight over California in November 2021. In the video, Trevor Jacob appears to be having a technical problem during the flight, before throwing himself out of the plane with a selfie stick in his hand, and then parachuting into nature. In a majestic scene captured by cameras placed on the plane, the video shows the plane crashing in the Los Padres National Forest.

In the clip, Jacob is seen making his way through the woods and traversing hills in what looks like a struggle to return to the urban world. In the clip, he says he is thirsty and lost in the forest. Weeks later, federal agencies opened an investigation to uncover the circumstances of the incident. Trevor Jacob received an order to keep the wreckage of his plane.

The YouTuber said he did not know where the plane crashed, but court documents showed he and his friend pulled the wreckage out of the forest with a raft two weeks after the incident. Jacob then cut the plane into small pieces and threw it into garbage containers.

Trevor Jacob admitted that he wanted to hinder the progress of the investigation by disposing of the wreckage, and that he made the video to make money in partnership with a company. He admitted to lying to investigators by reporting a report that the plane had a technical problem, according to a Justice Department statement. The YouTuber pleaded guilty to destroying or concealing evidence with the aim of obstructing a federal investigation, a felony punishable by up to 20 years in prison.