OWATONNA, Minn. (AP) — A small jet crashed Thursday while preparing to land at a regional airport in Minnesota, killing eight people, including casino and construction executives.

Authorities initially thought nine people might have been aboard the Raytheon Hawker 800, which went down about 9:30 a.m. about 60 miles south of the Twin Cities.

But by late evening, Department of Public Safety spokesman Doug Neville said it had been confirmed that eight people were on board.

The plane was carrying two pilots. Seven people were dead at the scene. One died later at a hospital.

Severe weather had been moving through southern Minnesota earlier Thursday, but witnesses and the National Weather Service said the storms were subsiding at the time of the crash.

The charter jet, flying from Atlantic City, N.J., to Owatonna, a town of 25,000, went down in a cornfield northwest of Degner Regional Airport, Sheriff Gary Ringhofer said.