A North Hollywood man this week became just the second person to plead guilty under a new federal law that makes it a crime to point a laser beam at an aircraft -- in this case, a jet and police helicopter near Bob Hope Airport in Burbank, officials announced Tuesday.
The man, Adam Gardenhire, 19, pleaded guilty Monday to deliberately pointing a commercial-grade green laser beam in March at multiple aircraft, including a Netjet-operated aircraft and Pasadena Police Department helicopter, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.
The incident was initially reported by the Netjet pilot, who was struck by the laser beam as he was preparing to land at Bob Hope Airport. The incident impaired his vision until the next day, according to the plea agreement.
When a Pasadena police helicopter responded to the reported laser attack, Gardenhire’s laser struck the pilot multiple times. The pilot was wearing protective gear and so did not suffer vision impairment, according to prosecutors.