In a case that may set precedent for years to come, a Los Angeles man has
received three years of probation for flying his remote-controlled drone
too close to a police helicopter. In addition to 30 days of community
service, the man was forced to give up his drone to law enforcement, and
will now be banned from owning or operating any drone for the full three
year probationary period.
Are you facing criminal charges in Pennsylvania? Call our Harrisburg criminal
defense attorneys today for tough, dedicated representation.
The Initial Arrest
The man was arrested on August 27, after police found him controlling the
drone from a parking lot in the Hollywood area. The police were searching
for a subject who was thought to be armed with a deadly weapon, and brought
out a helicopter to aid in the search. The man’s drone veered too
close to the helicopter, forcing it to “make an evasive move”
and eventually give up on the search.
Is this a Dangerous Precedent?
On November 19, the man pled no contest to one count of interfering with
a police investigation. This is just the latest development in a serious
of drone-related legal run-ins; just last month, a student in Kentucky
was arrested and charged with wanton endangerment after he crashed a drone
into a football stadium.
While it absolutely makes sense that drone operators should use these devices
in a safe and responsible way, there is much ambiguity about the legality
of using these devices. One major issue is that average users are likely
unaware when they breach restricted airspace, such as that around major
stadiums. This is an issue that some lawmakers are already trying to address,
and will likely continue to be a hot topic for years to come. Until then,
our Harrisburg criminal defense lawyers will stand by the side of those
facing excessive and unfair charges.
Don’t let a criminal conviction dictate your future. Call our firm
at (717) 798-3664 to get started.