Law enforcement reportedly apprehended a Detroit man wearing a top hat and a pea coat Saturday night after he allegedly aimed a laser at a Michigan State Police (MSP) helicopter.
MSP Helicopter Trooper 3 was patrolling the city when the 52-year-old man started pointing a green laser at the aircraft, CBS News reported. The suspect allegedly repeatedly targeted the helicopter until state troopers located him on the sidewalk, still engaged in pointing the laser at the ground, video of the incident posted on MSP Second District’s X account shows.
Here is video of the incident from Trooper 3. pic.twitter.com/XifnjQfPVf
— MSP Second District (@mspmetrodet) October 29, 2023
The man, who reportedly resides in Willis, Michigan, was placed in custody at the Detroit Detention Center with charges currently under prosecutorial review, according to CBS. (RELATED: China Allegedly Used Laser Against Coast Guard, The Philippines Say)
“It’s not often we see suspects walking around in top hats, but it did make him easy to identify. We can’t stress enough how dangerous it is to point lasers at any aircraft. We will continue to track down those who do this in order to keep our pilots safe,” Michigan State Lt. Mike Shaw said, MSP tweeted.
The state police department has apparently had a history of laser-pointing incidents, some of which have reportedly turned fatal. In January 2023, a man targeted MSP Helicopter 2 with a laser and allegedly fired at the aircraft and troopers who arrived to arrest him. The troopers then reportedly shot and killed the suspect at the scene.