UPDATED WITH VIDEO: Safety Bay man charged after laser pointer aimed at police helicopter

Police have charged a 22-year-old man after a laser light struck a police helicopter multiple times on Thursday May 13 2021.

The police helicopter was being flown over the Rockingham area when about 9:15pm it was struck by a blue laser light several times. The helicopter crew were able to track the laser light to a residence on Waimea Road, Safety Bay.

Regional Operations Group officers were directed to the residence, where they arrested a 22-year-old man and found a blue laser pointer under a bed. The arrested man was taken to Rockingham Police Station to be interviewed.

A 22-year-old man from Safety Bay has been charged with ‘Cause fear or alarm with laser or light to people in conveyances or others’ and is due to appear in the Rockingham Magistrates Court on Friday 28 May 2021.

A WA Police Force spokesperson said laser pointers are extremely dangerous items to point at any aircraft.

“Laser lights have the potential to illuminate the cabin of an aircraft and cause immediate distress to pilots, who on most occasions need to take immediate evasive action to retain safe control of the aircraft they are flying.

“This kind of offence creates a significant danger to those onboard the aircraft, and under section 74B of WA’s Criminal Code the penalty for a person found guilty of the offence can be a fine of up to $36,000 and/or a term of imprisonment for up to 7 years.”

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