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Suspects Held After Laser Beams Hit Police, TV Helicopters

Officers are seen seizing pointers
By Bob Cronin,  Newser Staff
Posted May 17, 2019 6:02 PM CDT
A police helicopter flies above Los Angeles.   (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)

(Newser) – Several people were taken into custody Thursday night after laser beams were pointed at aircraft over south Los Angeles. KTLA reports that its Sky5 helicopter was the first aircraft to be struck, followed by a police helicopter. Red and green laser beams were originating in the area. A group that was seen shining the lasers drove away, per KTLA, but police pulled the car over shortly afterward. Officers were spotted seizing two laser pointers and taking three people into custody. It's a federal crime to shine a laser at an aircraft.

In Riverside, police said in February that they caught a teenager in the act who had been pointing lasers at aircraft for weeks, per ABC7. They took video from a police helicopter as it was being hit by a laser beam, getting the teenager's location in the process. When officers went to arrest him, they showed him the video. (The Pentagon has said laser pointers are a problem for its pilots in the Middle East.)

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