LONGWOOD, Fla. - A 19-year-old Longwood man was arrested Saturday night after deputies said he pointed a laser at a Seminole County Sheriff's helicopter as it flew near his house.
Deputies said the pilot of the helicopter reported that the crew was being struck repeatedly by a laser about 11:45 p.m. while they were on patrol.
The helicopter crew was able to pinpoint the location of the laser to a home on Deerview Place.
Through the helicopter's night-vision camera system they saw a man in swimming trunks and no shirt standing in the home's pool enclosure shining a laser at the helicopter, according to the arrest report.
Deputies arrived at the house as three people were getting into a vehicle. The three told deputies that Trevor Ragno was the one pointing the laser at the helicopter, according to the report.
"He said he didn't have a good explanation," said Seminole County chief pilot Steve Farris. "As you see in the video, he's running around and we see him actually shine the laser beam at the helicopter."
Deputies said Ragno told them where the laser pointer was and said he didn't know that pointing a laser at an aircraft was a crime.
Farris said two of his pilots were endangered by the laser, which is a trend that's getting worse.
"The higher the laser beam goes the larger and more intense the beam gets, so actually cause flash-blind, blurred vision and permanent eye damage," said Farris.
Ragno was booked into the Seminole County Jail and charged with misuse of a laser lighting device and two counts of culpable negligence.