Bircotes: Woman shone ‘powerful’ laser at flying police chopper

In Court
In Court

A Bircotes woman shone a ‘powerful’ laser pen that she bought off eBay at a police helicopter from her home, a court heard.

Leanne Martin, 20, of Whitehouse Drive, admitted the offence at Worksop Magistrates’ Court.

On 28th January 2014, the pilot of a police helicopter heard his tactical officer shout ‘laser’ at around 9.23pm.

The pilot then saw a bright green light coming from the north side of Bircotes but managed to reposition the aircraft so that it did not ‘dazzle’ him.

He spotted the laser on two more occasions and then reported the incident to Doncaster Airport to warn other aircrafts.

Police officers were then sent around to the address and Martin was in the property where officers found the pen.

Prosecuting, Rod Chapman, said: “The pilot said that the laser did not directly shine in his eyes which was lucky because a great amount of concentration was required at the time.”

The court heard that Martin had been using the pen to entertain her dog with in the house when she heard a noise in the area so she opened the curtains and saw a light.

Martin then opened the window and decided to ‘point her pen at the helicopter’ even though her boyfriend told her to ‘stop.’”

After a short time she realised it was a police aircraft and stopped.

In mitigation, David Verity said: “She admitted the offence straight away and she is very embarrassed.”

“She did not know how powerful the laser pen was.”

“She fully understands the seriousness of it now and has apologised. When police asked her if she understood how serious it was, she said ‘I do now.’”

“She clearly was not thinking.”

“She had been using the laser to play with the dog in the house because it would run after the light. She is a lady of good character with no previous convictions.”

The case was adjourned until Thursday 21st August.