3 news helicopters hit by lasers

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One man has been arrested for pointing a green laser at FOX 5 News' helicopter and another news chopper flying near the Barclays Center in Brooklyn Wednesday night, according to police. A third helicopter was also hit by a laser near Newark-Liberty International Airport.

One of the news helicopters helped police track down and take two suspects into custody near Fulton St.

A chopper reporter used a camera to zoom in on the men, who were seen standing behind a building and laughing.

Police and the Federal Aviation Administration were contacted and guided to the location. An NYPD helicopter at the scene was also struck by the laser.

None of the pilots reported injuries.

Ossieo Silva, 20, of Ocean Ave. was charged with reckless endangerment as felony and misdemeanor.

Shining a laser at an aircraft is a federal crime and carries a maximum of 20 years in prison and $125,000 fine.

Lasers distract pilots from their safety duties and can lead to temporary blindness during critical phases of flight, such as takeoff and landing. In some cases in the past, pilots have reported eye injuries that required medical treatment, according to the Federal Aviation Administration.

The FAA says it is also investigating a laser incident involving a news helicopter near Newark Airport at about 5:20 p.m. Wednesday.

As of early October, the FAA has reported the following number incidents of lasers being pointed at aircraft near airports:

John F Kennedy     17
LaGuardia             65
Newark                  55

Similar incidents have occurred across the country with three reported near Dallas Wednesday night.

A Southwest Airlines plane, Virgin America plane and private business jet were affected. All three were inbound to Dallas Love Field. Both airliners were coming from Austin.

Lunsford says the laser came from an area 11 miles southeast of Dallas. He says a law enforcement helicopter was sent to investigate.

He says the planes were at altitudes of between 3,000 and 4,000 feet.

An FBI campaign last year targeted the illegal use of laser pointers to distract airplanes.

Authorities said at the time that instances of the crime had increased significantly since 2005, when federal officials first started keeping statistics.

With the Associated Press