CAPE CORAL POLICE DEPARTMENT
Public Affairs Office
1100 Cultural Park Boulevard
Cape Coral, FL 33990
Cape Coral Police Arrest Man for Shining Laser at Aircraft
(December 31, 2013)- On December 28, 2013, at approximately 10:25 PM, Cape Coral Police units responded to the 3000 block of SW 26th Ct., Cape Coral, in reference to a complaint of unknown subjects pointing a laser at an aircraft.
Lee County Aviation Chopper, ABLE 1, advised they had received a complaint from a commercial aircraft which was inbound to Southwest Florida International Airport that an unknown subject had shined a laser at their aircraft. While responding to the complaint, Lee County Aviation ABLE 1 advised that (3) unknown subjects were outside of a residence and had also shined the laser on their chopper, after which the subjects went back inside the residence. ABLE 1 was able to guide responding ground units to 3011 SW 26th Ct, Cape Coral, Lee County, Florida. ABLE 1 also advised that they had video of the laser being pointed from this location and would provide a copy to CCPD.
Officers made contact with subjects at the residence. Investigation revealed that it was Stephen Clyde Plock who pointed the laser at the aircraft. Officers obtained a sworn, post-Miranda written confession and placed Plock under arrest for Misuse of Laser Lighting Devices, a 3rd degree felony.
"Given the attention that cases such as this received in the years following 9-11, it is stunning that anyone would do this. Laser illumination devices that are available to the public are more powerful and affordable than ever before, and the potential to blind or disorient a pilot mid-flight is very real and very dangerous."- Det. Sergeant Dana Coston, Cape Coral Police Department Public Affairs Officer
Text of state statute included after the break.
784.062 Misuse of laser lighting devices.--
(1) As used in subsection (2), the term "laser lighting device" means a hand-held device, not affixed to a firearm, which emits a laser beam that is designed to be used by the operator as a pointer or highlighter to indicate, mark, or identify a specific position, place, item, or object. As used in subsection (3), the term "laser lighting device" means any device designed or used to amplify electromagnetic radiation by stimulated emission.
(2) Any person who knowingly and willfully shines, points, or focuses the beam of a laser lighting device at a law enforcement officer, engaged in the performance of his or her official duties, in such a manner that would cause a reasonable person to believe that a firearm is pointed at him or her commits a noncriminal violation, punishable as provided in s. 775.083.
(3)(a) Any person who knowingly and willfully shines, points, or focuses the beam of a laser lighting device on an individual operating a motor vehicle, vessel, or aircraft commits a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.
(b) Any person who knowingly and willfully shines, points, or focuses the beam of a laser lighting device on an individual operating a motor vehicle, vessel, or aircraft and such act results in bodily injury commits a felony of the second degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.