Sometimes a seemingly innocent activity can land one in legal hot water. This certainly was the case for a man in Fairfax County, who is facing criminal charges simply for using a laser pointer.
According to reports, the man pointed a blue laser light on a police helicopter three times. Allegedly the light had enough strength to affect two officers due to the reflection of the light into the cockpit of the helicopter. Following that, the helicopter circled back to the location where the laser light hit it, and located the automobile containing the laser using an infrared camera.
The motorist in that vehicle is now facing a misdemeanor charge of shining a laser at an aircraft. More seriously, however, is that he is now also the subject of a federal investigation by the Federal Aviation Administration as well. The law against shining a laser at an aircraft was put into place in 2012.
Sometimes people play with laser pointers for fun, not realizing how their actions will be interpreted by police. Unfortunately, even if a person means no harm, there are situations such as this one in which using a laser pointer is against the law. Those who are facing criminal charges involving the alleged unlawful use of a laser pointer may want to seek the help of a Virginia criminal defense attorney. An attorney can assess the person's situation, and explain how the law applies to the facts of the case. An attorney can also represent their client throughout the trial process, to ensure their client is treated fairly and is not subjected to false allegations.
Source: McLean Patch, "A Pointed Issue: Laser-Wielding Man Charged In Fairfax County," Emily Leayman, Sept. 26, 2017