During the June 23, 2013 episode of “Geraldo at Large”, Craig Rivera completed a new “Craig Investigates” segment into a new documentary about the investigation into doomed TWA Flight 800. The documentary creator, Tom Stalcup, did not buy into the results of the government’s investigation and believes a cover-up might have taken place.
TWA Flight 800 exploded mid-air on July 17, 1996, while en route to Paris, killing all who were onboard. The National Transportation Safety Board and FBI conducted a four-year investigation into the incident, reconstructing the plane from the wreckage before determining that a wiring short-circuit sparked an explosion in the near-empty fuel tank. Despite the results of this investigation, many witnesses are convinced the plane was shot down. Craig Rivera interviewed former National Guard pilot Fred Mayer, who saw pieces from the crash that he thought resembled the missiles he had seen while serving in Vietnam.
Tom Stalcup, a physics Ph.D. student at the time, was unconvinced by the government’s investigation. He spent 17 years interviewing whistleblowers and witnesses to produce a documentary that claims government investigators lied. Craig Rivera interviewed Tom Stalcup, who says his main goal is for the investigation to be re-opened and conducted by independent investigators so that witnesses are given a chance to testify. While the documentary has already come under fire from critics such as former FBI Chief Investigator James Kallstrom, Tom Stalcup believes his interviews with Fred Mayer and other high-level former government officials gives his documentary credibility.
As Craig Rivera then explains, the CIA was involved in the initial investigation as one hypothesis blamed terrorists for the attacks. They produced an animated simulation that concluded the missile eyewitnesses said they saw was actually a trail of burning fuel that came from the aircraft following the initial explosion. Tom Stalcup rebukes this theory, noting that the radars indicate a high velocity explosion occurred outside the plane and triggered a secondary explosion in the fuel tanks.
You can view the segment below:
Was Crash of TWA Flight 800 Really An Accident? from Craig Rivera on Vimeo.