‘Foolish’ man shone laser at police helicopter

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A man who shone a laser at a police helicopter has been ordered to complete 60 hours community service.

Naveene Pearce, whose address was given on court papers as Summer Meadows Park, pleaded guilty to endangering safety on an aircraft in February this year.

The 24-year-old also admitted possessing cannabis.

Derry Magistrates Court heard the helicopter reported to ground crew that they were being lasered from a house in the Kilfennan area.

Officers went to the scene and searched the house. The laser had been shone from a bedroom window where a six month old baby was sleeping.

During the search of the house a small amount of cannabis was discovered and Pearce was arrested.

CCTV footage showed that the laser did not strike the pilot, but the side of the helicopter.

Defence solicitor Maeliosa Barr told the court the 24-year-old accepted it was a “foolish act”.

He said Pearce “did not realise the seriousness of his actions” but has now learned his lesson.

Ordering Pearce to complete the community service order, Deputy District Judge Terence Dunlop also fined him £150.