Officials: Taliban caused deadly December helicopter crash

A U.S. military helicopter crash that killed six U.S. troops in Afghanistan on Dec. 17 was caused by the Taliban, officials said Thursday.

The cause of the crash is still officially under investigation, but U.S. officials told CNN it was caused by an enemy-generated explosion, possibly by a ground-based bomb set off by the low-flying helicopter.

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Taliban insurgents regularly claim credit for helicopter crashes in Afghanistan, but usually those claims go unconfirmed by U.S. Defense officials.

The incident was the deadliest for U.S. troops since a helicopter crash in August 2012 that killed seven. One crew member survived the Dec. 17 crash with serious injuries.

Killed in the crash were Chief Warrant Officer 2 Randy L. Billings, 34, of Heavener, Okla.; Chief Warrant Officer 2 Joshua B. Silverman, 35, of Scottsdale, Ariz.; Sgt. Peter C. Bohler, 29, of Willow Spring, N.C.; Sgt. 1st Class Omar W. Forde, 28, of Marietta, Ga.; Staff Sgt. Jesse L. Williams, 30, of Elkhart, Ind.; and Spc. Terry K. D. Gordon, 22, of Shubuta, Miss.