Former Olympian Vows to Fly Again After Prison Sentence for Crashing Plane

Trevor Jacob posted footage of the initial crash on his YouTube channel

Crashing your vehicle for YouTube views is not a good idea.
AFP via Getty Images

What do former Olympic athletes do when their competitive days are done? In the case of Trevor Jacob, whose skill at snowboarding took him to the Winter Olympics in Sochi, the answer involves a popular YouTube channel. Jacob’s videos include athletic feats echoing his extreme sports background, travelogues and videos that reflect his fondness for flying small airplanes. It’s the last of these where the controversy began — one which recently saw Jacob sentenced to six months in federal prison.

As The Washington Post‘s Daniel Wu reported earlier this month, Jacob was recently sentenced to a short prison term after pleading guilty to charges that he staged a video of him narrowly escaping a plane crash. Specifically, Jacob was charged with lying to the NTSB investigators tasked with investigating the site of the crash.

“It’s really turned me from a boy into a man,” Jacob said in a video posted on December 4. The text in the description strikes the appropriate tone: “We learn from our mistakes. Thank you for your support.”

Still, Jacob also plans to keep flying — both now and after he’s served his time. The title of this most recent video, after all, is “I Got My Pilots License Back! But Going To Prison…”

As for how he got his license back, Business Insider‘s Grace Eliza Goodwin and Taylor Rains have more details on that. According to what the FAA told Goodwin and Rains, Jacob currently has a temporary pilot certificate, which is good for 120 days as he waits to hear back about whether his application for a permanent license will be approved.

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Not surprisingly, the FAA revoked Jacob’s license in the wake of the initial crash — but he is free to reapply for it unless the suspension involved drugs. Jacob said that the agency in question had been “nothing but extremely understanding.” And that honestly seems understandable — while intentionally crashing one’s vehicle is colossally stupid and potentially dangerous, Jacob will spend time incarcerated for his actions. One hopes he’s learned his lessons from this whole situation; there are plenty of eminently watchable things you can do for the cameras that don’t involve stints in federal prison.


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