PDA

View Full Version : Guy who lasered airplanes.. appropriate punishment?



REDREAD
01-05-2005, 10:55 AM
Well, on the radio this morning they said they arrested that guy who pointed a laser at an airplane and helicopter. They said under the patriot act, he could get up to 25 years in jail..

This seems a little extreme to me, considering that hired killers get out in less than 10 years.. Other murders have only served 3-5 years. Now, I realize that if he gets 25 years, he may not have to serve them all.

But, what's your opinion on an appropriate punishment?

Redsfaithful
01-05-2005, 10:59 AM
Assuming it's his first offense? A fine. Some community service wouldn't be bad.

I'm sure he'll be made an example of though. What wonderful times we live in.

letsgojunior
01-05-2005, 11:09 AM
He lasered a commercial jetliner with 100-200 people on it... planes have crashed over a lot less than having a pilot blinded when he's trying to land. I really have no problem with whatever penalty they want to give him. Air travel changed after 9/11, and when you have an idiot like this consciously endangering the lives of hundreds of people, he should be appropriately punished.


Assuming it's his first offense? A fine. Some community service wouldn't be bad.



I don't mean to be rude but seriously? Fines and community service are for shoplifters. This guy intentionally endangered the lives of every single person on the planes he hit. And it's not his first offense - several pilots have reported seeing the laser upon trying to land.


I'm sure he'll be made an example of though. What wonderful times we live in.


I don't know about anyone else but I'm a lot more concerned about having my pilot being blinded while trying to land than about the civil liberties of some jerk.

NJReds
01-05-2005, 11:16 AM
He lasered a commercial jetliner with 100-200 people on it...

Actually it was a chartered cessna with about a dozen people on board...but that doesn't change the fact that it was an extremely stupid and dangerous thing to do. That said, I'd be shocked if he gets 25 years.

This happened about 10 miles from where I live.

Here's the story from my local paper.

N.J. man charged with shining laser at airplane
Wednesday, January 5, 2005

By TOM TRONCONE and DOUGLASS CROUSE
STAFF WRITERS


NEWARK - The pictures on the Web site for the company selling the Jasper laser pointer show a bright green beam of light ascending into the night sky. Use the cigar-shaped gizmo to point out stars, the Web site says.

A Parsippany man who bought the pointer and, according to authorities, shone it into the sky above his house is facing 25 years in federal prison for temporarily blinding two pilots during their approach to Teterboro Airport last Wednesday.

David W. Banach, 38, appeared before a federal magistrate Tuesday on charges that he violated a portion of the Patriot Act when the laser he was using in his back yard struck a chartered Cessna Citation owned by Atlantic Aviation Flight Services of Teterboro.

Banach is charged with interfering with a mass transportation vehicle, as well as lying to the FBI during his interrogation. He was released on an unsecured $100,000 bond.

His attorney, Gina Mendola-Longarzo, blasted the government, saying her client is being made a "sacrificial lamb" and used to "send a message" to others. She called the incident unintentional and said Banach is "in a state of shock" over the charges.

"I have a lot of respect for the U.S. Attorney's Office, but one would think they would want to chase real terrorists," Mendola-Longarzo said. "He will plead not guilty. ... We are going to fight these charges."

Mendola-Longarzo said Banach and his 7-year-old daughter were toying with the laser pointer on a deck in their back yard, pointing at trees, neighbors' houses and the sky. She said Banach did not intend to disrupt the plane, which the FBI said was traveling at close to 300 mph at an altitude of 3,000 feet.

The incident and its similarity to several others reported across the country prompted a widespread investigation bythe FBI's Joint Terrorism Task Force, Federal Aviation Administration, New Jersey State Police, Passaic County Sheriff's Department, the Morris and Passaic County prosecutors offices, Port Authority police and the Parsippany, Morris Plains, Morristown, Rockaway and Wayne police departments.

Two days after the incident, the pilot, identified in court papers as R.D.,accompanied investigators in a Port Authority helicopter in an attempt to identify the plane's location when the laser struck it, according to the criminal complaint.

Using an FAA mapping of the plane's flight path from Florida to Teterboro, the pilot directed the helicopter to the vicinity where the beam originated.

While circling above the area, the helicopter was struck by a similar green laser and shone a spotlight on the home from which the beam emanated so officers on the ground could approach the house, the complaint states.

When officers arrived at his house, Banach blamed the helicopter incident on hisdaughter and denied pointing the laser at the plane, it says.

Banach gave investigators the laser and consented to an interview in his home, during which investigators said he admitted to shining the beam at the helicopter. He accompanied FBI agents to their Newark office and consented to a polygraph, the complaint says.

Banach, a married father of three, later admitted that he was responsible for both laser incidents, authorities allege. He was not charged with shining the beam on the helicopter because it is not considered a mass transit vehicle, they said.

"We have to send a clear message to the public that there is no harmless mischief when it comes to airplanes," U.S. Attorney Christopher J. Christie said. "Mr. Banach's actions as alleged in the criminal complaint put innocent lives at risk. That is illegal and unacceptable."

Joseph Billy Jr., FBI special agent in charge of New Jersey, called Banach's actions "foolhardy and negligent."

Banach, who did not address the charges Tuesday, uses the tool for work, shining the laser down fiber-optic cables to check for breaks, his lawyer said.

Banach bought the pointer from Bigha Inc. in early December, marketing director Noah Acres said Tuesday.

"From what I've heard I don't think he had any kind of elaborate setup," such as a tripod, Acres said. "Basically I think that people living in highly populated areas need to be aware of air traffic. A pilot's eyes are dark-adjusted so a sudden flash of light can be very distracting."

The Jasper pointer's beam is visible at 10,000 feet and can be fitted with a tripod and a scope to aim at moving objects, according to Bigha's Web site, which lists guidelines that include not shining the laser at planes.

"This green laser can't really blind you from that distance but it can certainly distract you," Acres said. "And many of these incidents have occurred during a plane's approach, when the pilot is in a particularly vulnerable situation."

Acres said federal authorities contacted the company last week for background on green lasers. People also use the lasers in groups to point out birds or plant life, and some military personnel use them to aim weaponry, he said.

A green laser is significantly more powerful than a conventional red laser, according to Bigha, which sells the device for $119. The beam shoots from the pointer at 186,000 miles per second. When beamed into the night sky, photons will eventually travel over the full distance of the galaxy, the Web site claims.

Executives with Atlantic Aviation Flight Services weren't available for comment Tuesday, according to a woman who answered the phone at its Industrial Avenue office in Teterboro.

Last week, a pilot in Cleveland reported a laser beam entering his cockpit. That same day, two pilots in Colorado Springs reported seeing green laser lights. And in September, a Delta Air Lines pilot complained that a beam hit his eyes near Salt Lake City.

A bulletin issued to law enforcement officials in November said there is evidence that terrorists have explored using lasers to blind pilots as they land planes.

The Air Line Pilots Association is looking at ways of educating pilots about the risks of laser beams and how best to respond if the beams penetrate the cockpit, spokesman Pete Janhunen said. In the meantime, the association preaches common sense.

"We've been saying that if pilots do notice it, they should keep their eyes on the instruments and not out the windows," Janhunen said.

Redsland
01-05-2005, 11:21 AM
What lgj said.

The guy undertook a criminal act endangering the lives of numerous innocent people. He pointed a blinding device at two pilots who were already flying toward the ground at 300 mph, and who had plenty of other tasks to manage at the same time. Then he did the same thing to helicopter pilots sent to locate him.

Those lasers can blind people, and I don't mean temporarily. I know a teacher who suffered permanent damage to her eyes, and who must wear very dark glasses at all times. She even had to retire because she couldn't work anymore.

So, at best, the criminal under discussion here endangered the livelihoods of three or more pilots. At worst, he's guilty of multiple counts of attempted murder and wanton destruction of perhaps hundreds of thousands of dollars of private and government property. More depending on the type of helicopter involved and the value of whatever's in the flight path of that airport.

A fine? Community service?

EDIT: Thanks, NJRed, for clarifying the type of plane and number of passengers. I'll adjust my post accordingly.

letsgojunior
01-05-2005, 11:25 AM
I was referring to the incident at O'Hare (that was a jet but with 30 people on it, I am just wrong all around). It doesn't sound like it was the same source though now. I haven't been in NJ for several days so I didn't see that story. Regardless of how many people are on board, it still is just an extraordinarily dangerous and reckless thing to do.

Unassisted
01-05-2005, 11:33 AM
As someone who lives along the flight path of a major runway at my city's busiest airport, I particularly like the idea of harsh punishments for anyone who goofs around with aircraft in flight.

As for the punishment fitting the crime, this has the potential to be just as hazardous as the incidents involving drunken idiots who storm the cockpit. AFAIK, most of them get locked up.

Besides, what an idiot this guy was to point his laser at the very helicopter that was out looking for the source of the laser.

Johnny Footstool
01-05-2005, 11:44 AM
This was a criminal act, not an act of terrorism. The Patriot Act shouldn't come into play.

Charge the man with multiple counts of reckless endangerment, aggravated assault, or even attempted murder. But don't start throwing the Patriot Act around for something like this.

NJReds
01-05-2005, 11:53 AM
EDIT: Thanks, NJRed, for clarifying the type of plane and number of passengers. I'll adjust my post accordingly.

No problem. There have been some cases where commercial airliners have been targeted. And like you said, it doesn't really matter if there were 10 or 100 people aboard...it was a reckless and dangerous act.

Redsland
01-05-2005, 11:57 AM
I was thinking about an incident involving a commercial carrier some weeks ago, and I've looked back through the last two months or so of Aviation Week looking for a write-up, but no luck. I'm missing a few issues, though, due to the holidays.

NJReds
01-05-2005, 12:00 PM
I was thinking about an incident involving a commercial carrier some weeks ago, and I've looked back through the last two months or so of Aviation Week looking for a write-up, but no luck. I'm missing a few issues, though, due to the holidays.

I may be mistaken, but I think this guy in Parsippany is the first person ever caught doing this.

Redsland
01-05-2005, 12:07 PM
Yes, he is the first one caught, although there have been at least three other incidents involving lasers and aircraft on approach. Homeland Security and the FAA have both issued warnings on the matter, one to airports, the other to airlines. Terrorism is the obvious fear.

letsgojunior
01-05-2005, 12:10 PM
I just looked up the story in the Star Ledger... this jacka$$ not only lied to the FBI about being behind the plane incident, but also get this... he blamed his 7 year old daughter for shining the laser.

Jerseyan charged for pointing laser at aircraft
Morris man denied, then admitted helicopter strike and Tetorboro plane hit
Wednesday, January 05, 2005
BY RUDY LARINI
Star-Ledger Staff
A Parsippany man who admitted shining a laser beam at a Port Authority police helicopter on New Year's Eve after first blaming his 7-year-old daughter has been charged with pointing the laser at a private plane approaching Teterboro Airport two nights earlier.

David Banach, 38, is charged with two federal offenses -- violating a provision of the Patriot Act that makes it illegal to interfere with the operator of a mass transportation vehicle and lying to the FBI.

Advertisement






His arrest is the first in a recent rash of similar laser-pointing incidents across the country, according to an FBI spokesman in Washington, D.C.

Banach's attorney, Gina Mendola-Longarzo, yesterday denied there was any "willful misconduct" on Banach's part, but would not say whether he intentionally aimed the laser at the aircraft. She also criticized federal authorities for using the Patriot Act to prosecute her client.

"I would think they would want to devote their time and resources to real terrorists," she said.

Federal authorities in New Jersey said Banach's arrest, while not related to any terrorist threat, demonstrates the federal government's commitment to investigate and prosecute incidents that threaten public safety.

"We have to send a clear message to the public that there is no harmless mischief when it comes to airplanes," said U.S. Attorney Christopher J. Christie. "Mr. Banach's actions as alleged in the criminal complaint put innocent lives at risk. That is illegal and unacceptable."

Laser beams can temporarily blind or disorient pilots and possibly cause a plane to crash, especially during critical periods such as takeoffs or landings.

"It is important that we do everything we possibly can to ensure the safety of our nation's air carriers," Joseph Billy Jr., special agent in charge of the New Jersey FBI office, said in announcing Banach's arrest. "While this particular incident was not terrorism-related, the FBI considers this an extremely serious matter as not only was the safety of the pilot and passengers placed in jeopardy by Banach's actions, (but) so were countless innocent victims on the ground in this densely populated area.

"What was done was foolhardy and negligent," Billy added.

Banach appeared before U.S. Magistrate Judge Mark Falk in Newark yesterday and was released on bail of a $100,000 unsecured appearance bond, which requires no posting of cash or property. The pilot endangerment charge he faces is punishable by up to 20 years in prison and a fine of $250,000. Lying to the FBI carries a maximum five-year sentence and $250,000 fine.

The stocky, blond Banach, accompanied yesterday by his wife, Allison, and Mendola-Longarzo, would only say "No comment" when approached by reporters and photographers as he left the courthouse.

Mendola-Longarzo said Banach was "in a state of shock, frankly.

"I think my client is a very sympathetic person," she added. "He's an average guy."

Mendola-Longarzo said Banach works for a telecommunications and fiber optics firm in the Boonton area, but she did not know its name.

The incident last Wednesday attracted widespread media coverage in this post-9/11 era of heightened aviation security.

The pilot of a corporate Cessna Citation on approach to Teterboro Airport at 5:30 p.m. reported that a laser was aimed into his cockpit as he flew at an altitude of about 3,000 feet. The pilot safely landed the aircraft with 13 people aboard at Teterboro.

In investigating the incident two days later, a Port Authority police helicopter with detectives and the Cessna's pilot aboard returned to the area where the pilot saw the laser beam Wednesday, authorities said. While circling above, the helicopter was the target of a laser beam and a crewman then shined a spotlight on the house where the beam originated.

Police on the ground descended on the house and began questioning Banach, who initially said his 7-year-old daughter pointed the laser at the helicopter. Banach later admitted pointing the laser at the helicopter, but "adamantly denied" any involvement in the Teterboro incident.

He then was taken to FBI headquarters, where he admitted he was responsible for both incidents after taking a polygraph examination and being questioned further.

Banach purchased the green, cigar-sized Jasper laser on the Internet from a firm known as Bigha in Corvallis, Ore., according to company's marketing director, Noah Acres. The lasers can be used for recreational purposes, such as star-gazing, as a pointer for lectures and presentations or as a sight-lining tool in construction. They also can be mounted on firearms for aiming, he said.

He said the Jasper has a power level of 3.5 milliwatts -- explaining that a milliwatt is one-thousandth of a watt -- but has a range of up to 25,000 feet because it is concentrated into a "tiny, precise beam."

Acres said he was not concerned about any adverse impact on the laser business as a result of the rash of similar recent incidents involving lasers pointed at aircraft.

"It is of concern to me that I sold something to somebody who didn't behave too well with it," he said. "Anybody acting irresponsibly with anything, whether it's a laser or a hammer, can cause trouble."

Federal authorities are investigating recent reports of lasers aimed at aircraft in Chicago; Cleveland; Washington, D.C.; Houston; Colorado Springs, Colo., and Medford, Ore., but Bill Carter, an FBI spokesman in Washington, D.C., said he was not aware of any other arrests.

The president of the Coalition of Airline Pilots Associations yesterday criticized the government's response to the laser-aircraft incidents.

"Pilots are deeply troubled that the lessons of 9/11 continue to go unheeded," Capt. Jon Safley said, noting that a November government warning on the possible use of lasers against aircraft by terrorists was not made available to the pilots until last week.

"Pilots are very concerned about the apparent laser attacks on passenger airlines during the past several weeks, and even more concerned that they have not been given adequate warning about these incidents," Safley said. "We call on the Transportation Security Administration and the Federal Aviation Administration to conduct an immediate review and to provide flight crews with advice on how to deal with this dangerous situation."



Staff writer Ron Marsico contributed to this report.

RedFanAlways1966
01-05-2005, 12:31 PM
I believe there was a commercial jet that had a laser pointed in the cockpit at John Hopkins Airport in Cleveland a couple of weeks ago.

This guy deserves whatever he gets. Smart-guy should have checked the laws of this land before doing something so stupid. This was a very stupid thing for him to do. I think anyone with an ounce of sense would know that it is dangerous to do what he did. I am also sure that anyone with a high-tech laser like this knows that it can permantly damage the eyesight of a person.

He'll probably get a slap on the wrist due to his clean record. I must say, "What wonderful times we live in when people think a punishment for shining lasers at pilots s/b minor. I doubt they'd feel that way if a relative was killed b/c dummy brought the plane down with his stupid-and-immature action."

I would venture to guess that if anyone had a relative/friend on one of those planes, they would feel the same. It would make me want to take that high-tech laser and shove it where the laser don't shine in the dummy who did it. We have laws and maximum sentences for crimes in this country. Everyone in this country can check the laws and punishments of our country at their own freewill.

LvJ
01-05-2005, 12:46 PM
Guantanamo Bay :devil:

creek14
01-05-2005, 12:51 PM
Since 1997 there have been over 200 reported incidents of laser being directed into the cockpits of aircraft.

Redsland
01-05-2005, 01:00 PM
Creek, I'm curious: are you getting that from an open source like Defense News or Av Week? I'd like to dig a little deeper into this.

creek14
01-05-2005, 01:02 PM
Creek, I'm curious: are you getting that from an open source like Defense News or Av Week? I'd like to dig a little deeper into this.
Yeah it was open source and I gave a quick look to see if I could find it again before I posted. I didn't. I'll dig a little later this afternoon when I have more time.

creek14
01-05-2005, 01:04 PM
Redsland (http://www.findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m2194/is_4_72/ai_100876733)

Roy Tucker
01-05-2005, 01:05 PM
I think the guy did a stupid and dangerous thing (or things, I think he probably did it more than once) and then just panicked.

Guy plays around with his laser, says "wheeeeee, look, I can shine this on airplanes and see a green dot". Probably realizes its not a smart thing but what the hell, I'll stop if it gets anywhere serious. Next thing he knows, helicopters are flying overhead, FBI shows up on his doorstep, guy loses his mind, panicks, denies it first, then blames it on his daughter, and then finally admits to it. All very stupid, immature, foolish, and dangerous behavior.

I hope they prosecute him to the appropriate degree of the law, scare the absolute bejesus out of the guy, and splash it all over the news. It sounds like this may be a growing trend and the general population needs to understand the severity of the danger this causes, that it is an extremely serious and dangerous matter, and not something to come anywhere close to.

But in the end after all that, I don't think this guy is a criminal and I don't think he deserves getting locked up for 25 years. Fine him, put him on probation, do some community service like help educate people on the hazards of what he did, something like that. I don't think anything is gained by him serving hard time.

FWIW, about 5-7 years ago, the big thing with kids were the red laser pointers. For about a summer, it was all the rage for kids to have these and shine them on all kinds of objects. My kids had a couple and we'd goof around with them shining them in the back yard on the lot line, make the cat chase the red dot, and other stupid stuff like that. I told the kids to never shine it any anyone, cars, etc.

Pretty soon, kids started taking them to school, shining them on teachers, shining them on the screen at movie theatres, taking them to the mall, shined them on cops, and that's when the stuff hit the fan. Because it looked just like a laser pointer for a rifle. They got banned after that. The batteries wore out on ours and after hearing about what was happening with them, we allowed them to die a quiet death in the Tucker house.

Larkin Fan
01-05-2005, 01:15 PM
Since 1997 there have been over 200 reported incidents of laser being directed into the cockpits of aircraft.

I also read an article about a week ago stating that there were around 7 incidents over Christmas of this happening. One resulting in eye injury to a pilot.

This guy should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. He not only endangered the lives of everyone on that plane, but the lives of anyone on the ground where said plane may have crashed as a result of his actions. He's not a kid and it doesn't take a genius to figure out that you don't go shining a laser at an aircraft.

creek14
01-05-2005, 01:16 PM
I also read an article about a week ago stating that there were around 7 incidents over Christmas of this happening. One resulting in eye injury to a pilot.
Officials think that is due to copycats and pilots reporting it more often now that others are reporting.

Redsland
01-05-2005, 01:16 PM
Thanks, creek. It's interesting that the article cited predates this recent surge by a year and a half or so and looked at only 16 states. Obviously this is not a new phenomenon.

creek14
01-05-2005, 01:18 PM
Thanks, creek. It's interesting that the article cited predates this recent surge by a year and a half or so and looked at only 16 states. Obviously this is not a new phenomenon.
That isn't the only place I saw it, that was just the easiest one to find quickly.

Red Heeler
01-05-2005, 01:19 PM
O.K., I'll agree that shining a laser at an airplane isn't the smartest thing in the world to do. On the other hand, I certainly don't think that there was any malicious intent on the part of the guy. I also think that the chances of blinding the pilots is incredibly remote, especially on purpose. Without a tripod and a scope, even managing to shine the laser on a plane that is, at the very least, over half a mile away and traveling at 300 mph is not very easy. Let alone trying to target the pilot's eyes.

I loved this bit of sensationalism on the part of the reporter:

The beam shoots from the pointer at 186,000 miles per second.
Duh, speed of light!!!

creek14
01-05-2005, 01:32 PM
You people do know that some (most??) of these laser incidents have been with industrial grade lasers (the big green ones) and not just those little penlight things you use to torment your cat. That might not be the case with this NJ guy, but it is with several others.

BTW, those green lasers are 35x brighter than the red ones.

Johnny Footstool
01-05-2005, 02:07 PM
I loved this bit of sensationalism on the part of the reporter

I noticed that too. Hilarious! :MandJ:

Redsland
01-05-2005, 02:23 PM
Without a tripod and a scope, even managing to shine the laser on a plane that is, at the very least, over half a mile away and traveling at 300 mph is not very easy.
Yet it happened at least 200 times over a six-year span.

A plane descends along a very specific path at a very specific speed and a very specific angle. Get in that path, and the cockpit is a stationary target located between the red wing light and the green wing light.

To creek's point about the equipment in use here, she's hinting at the reason I've been looking for more substantive info. Look; Homeland Security is involved. Perhaps due to a knee-jerk CYA fear about a worst-case scenario. But certainly not because of the threat of a crash from blinded pilots. You see a flash, you turn away, and you pull up and go around for another try.

So perhaps this isn't a Homeland Defense CYA. Perhaps they have info that terrorists are reconnoitering airport flight paths using precision laser range finders like this (http://www.laseroptronix.se/dispu/laserace1000.html) commercially available one. One guy, who will eventually be a shooter, watches planes land at night while a buddy calls out distances. Later, the shooter will return with a shoulder-fired surface-to-air missile, eyeball the range and speed of the plane, shoot it down on approach, and slip away into the night.

Or, perhaps since IR-guided SAMs lose most of their lethality when fired from the front, terrorists are doing some proof-of-concept on laser-designating their targets, hoping to improve their missiles' effectiveness. Russian ATGMs, for example, come in man-portable varieties and can be effective against slow-moving air targets (like planes on approach). When fired from the ground, they are usually IR-guided, but can have a laser-guided capability when fired from an airborne platform. It may be possible to port this laser capability to the MANPAD variety. It may have happened already.

Food for thought. We aren't just talking about penlights here.

creek14
01-05-2005, 07:51 PM
Or, perhaps since IR-guided SAMs lose most of their lethality when fired from the front, terrorists are doing some proof-of-concept on laser-designating their targets, hoping to improve their missiles' effectiveness. Russian ATGMs, for example, come in man-portable varieties and can be effective against slow-moving air targets (like planes on approach). When fired from the ground, they are usually IR-guided, but can have a laser-guided capability when fired from an airborne platform. It may be possible to port this laser capability to the MANPAD variety. It may have happened already.
That kind of talk gets me all excited. :mhcky21: (Yeah, I'm a geek)

paintmered
01-05-2005, 08:09 PM
Since 1997 there have been over 200 reported incidents of laser being directed into the cockpits of aircraft.


I read that too a few days back.

Pointing a laser at a plane is akin to pointing a gun at a person. Both are one step short of pulling the trigger.

Falls City Beer
01-05-2005, 09:51 PM
I think the guy did a stupid and dangerous thing (or things, I think he probably did it more than once) and then just panicked.

Guy plays around with his laser, says "wheeeeee, look, I can shine this on airplanes and see a green dot". Probably realizes its not a smart thing but what the hell, I'll stop if it gets anywhere serious. Next thing he knows, helicopters are flying overhead, FBI shows up on his doorstep, guy loses his mind, panicks, denies it first, then blames it on his daughter, and then finally admits to it. All very stupid, immature, foolish, and dangerous behavior.

I hope they prosecute him to the appropriate degree of the law, scare the absolute bejesus out of the guy, and splash it all over the news. It sounds like this may be a growing trend and the general population needs to understand the severity of the danger this causes, that it is an extremely serious and dangerous matter, and not something to come anywhere close to.

But in the end after all that, I don't think this guy is a criminal and I don't think he deserves getting locked up for 25 years. Fine him, put him on probation, do some community service like help educate people on the hazards of what he did, something like that. I don't think anything is gained by him serving hard time.

FWIW, about 5-7 years ago, the big thing with kids were the red laser pointers. For about a summer, it was all the rage for kids to have these and shine them on all kinds of objects. My kids had a couple and we'd goof around with them shining them in the back yard on the lot line, make the cat chase the red dot, and other stupid stuff like that. I told the kids to never shine it any anyone, cars, etc.

Pretty soon, kids started taking them to school, shining them on teachers, shining them on the screen at movie theatres, taking them to the mall, shined them on cops, and that's when the stuff hit the fan. Because it looked just like a laser pointer for a rifle. They got banned after that. The batteries wore out on ours and after hearing about what was happening with them, we allowed them to die a quiet death in the Tucker house.


I completely agree.

Phoenix
01-05-2005, 10:21 PM
No, he's a criminal. Prosecute him to the fullest extent of the law and hope you're not in the next airplane with some jackass trying to blind your pilot.

remdog
01-06-2005, 01:20 AM
I do 30-35 round trip flights every year. I can't tell you how excited I am about this new game called 'Pin the Laser On the Pilot'! :rolleyes:

Rem