Man killed in Chesco after falling from balloon basket

A hot air balloon pilot was killed Sunday in East Pikeland Township when he fell from the basket while landing and was crushed beneath, according to the police.

The man, 47-year-old Jeffrey Hooten of Albuquerque, N.M., was landing at about 7:20 a.m. near the 500 block of Wall Street when he reached for a rope that deflates the balloon and fell, officials said.

East Pikeland Police Chief James Franciscus said the man was dragged beneath the balloon as it landed laterally.

There were 10 other people in the basket at the time. Someone was performing CPR on Hooten when officers arrived, officials said. He was pronounced dead at Phoenixville Hospital.

- Tricia L. Nadolny

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