Lawsuits filed for information on Flight 800 crash
BOSTON (AP) — A man who helped produce a documentary that questions the official cause of the 1996 crash of TWA Flight 800 has filed federal lawsuits seeking more information from the military.
Thomas Stalcup says in two lawsuits filed in Boston last week that he received inadequate responses to Freedom of Information requests to the Missile Defense Agency and the Naval Special Warfare Command.
Stalcup, a physicist who lives in Sandwich, Mass., has challenged the National Transportation Safety Board’s determination that the explosion of the aircraft’s center fuel tank caused the New York-to-Paris flight to crash minutes after taking off from New York’s Kennedy Airport, killing all 230 people aboard. He is among a group of people who believe the plane was downed by a missile.
Among the records Stalcup is seeking are the names and dates of all military exercises conducted on the East Coast during the summer of 1996. He also requested from the Missile Defense Agency all test and evaluation master plans for all systems involved in missile defense for Fiscal Year 1996.
Stalcup is also seeking records from the Navy SEALs, which participated in recovery efforts after the plane crashed off Long Island on July 17, 1996. Stalcup has asked for all data, imagery, video, memos or other information on SEAL activities with 100 miles of the Long Island coast during July and August 1996.
“Effectively, I got no documents from either agency,” Stalcup said Monday. The lawsuits ask a judge to order the agencies to turn over the information sought by Stalcup.
A spokesman for the Department of Defense declined to comment and referred questions to the Department of Justice, which represents the department in court matters. A spokesperson for DOJ did not immediately return a call seeking comment.
The Naval Special Warfare Command, based in San Diego, Calif., did not immediately return a call seeking comment.
Stalcup co-produced “TWA Flight 800,” a documentary that aired last month on the EPIX television channel. He is among a group of people pushing to reopen the investigation into the crash.