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NBC News has obtained a seven-minute clip of communications between two air-traffic controllers and the pilot of Prince’s plane as it made an unscheduled stop in Moline, Illinois, six days before the star died.
In the clip, an air traffic controller at the Chicago En Route Radar Center in Aurora, Illinois, just outside Chicago, directs the pilot to the Quad Cities International Airport in Moline, Illinois, about 120 miles to the west. The plane had been bound from Atlanta to Minneapolis.
The controller in Moline then asks his counterpart in Aurora why the jet needs to land:
“What’s the nature of the emergency?”
“An unresponsive passenger,” says the Aurora controller.
The controllers then try to determine the gender of the passenger, and where the plane should land in Moline. The pilot of Prince’s private jet then responds, “It’s a male passenger.”
The plane, a Dassault Falcon, is directed to the west end of the north ramp at the Quad Cities International Airport in Moline. According to an aircraft spokesperson, the jet made landed at 1:35 a.m. on April 15.
NBC News has edited the audio to remove dead air, but has not deleted any of the conversation.
Prince was found dead at his estate near Minneapolis on Thursday morning, April 21.