NewsLocal News


Governor calls Henrico man a ‘fool’ for pointing laser at pilot

Posted at 7:58 PM, Aug 31, 2015
and last updated 2015-09-01 06:29:21-04

HENRICO, Va. -- A local man is in custody after police said he pointed a laser at an area police plane.

Michael Pollock was arrested Saturday night for pointing at the plane flying above his neighborhood in Henrico.

According to sources, Pollock lives on Pamela Drive in Henrico, that's right off Three Chopt Road; the location where he was arrested.

Neighbors told CBS 6 it is common to see the plane fly above the area.

"My wife was saying ‘what's that’ and I said that's the police plane flying around just checking business," said Tom Moncrief.

According to Henrico police, Pollock has been charged with two misdemeanors stemming from interfering with an aircraft. If convicted he could face jail time.

Henrico Sherriff Mike Wade said Pollock remains in custody, as of Monday night.

Virginia Aviation Board President Johnny Mazza says this is a problem plaguing pilots nationwide.

In 2012, 4,000 incidents were reported nationwide by pilots. In 2013 the Virginia State Police plane was targeted.

"You wonder what people are thinking," Mazza said.

"Imagine driving late at night, pitch dark, and someone blinds you with a flashlight. What happens to your night vision? It's gone," Mazza added.

Governor Terry McAuliffe spoke about laser pointing at pilots when asked by CBS 6 reporter Joe St. George.

"Any fool who wants to take a pointer and aim it at a plane I would support anything to see that person is locked up," Governor McAuliffe said.

Currently lasers are federally regulated; however pilots have said cheaper, unregulated models are posing problems as well.