An 18-year-old Thermal man suspected of pointing a hand-held laser at the cockpit of a sheriff’s helicopter bailed out of jail today.
A Riverside County Sheriff’s Department helicopter was responding to assist the Indio Police Department on a call at 6:55 p.m., Thursday Feb. 14, and as the craft flew over Harrison Street and Avenue 53 in Coachella, someone aimed a hand-held laser at the cockpit, sheriff’s Sgt. Randy Wedertz said.
The crew directed officers on the ground to Torres, who allegedly had a hand-held laser in his possession, Wedertz said.
Torres was arrested and booked at the county jail in Indio.
He posted a $25,000 bond today and is expected to be arraigned April 15 at the Larson Justice Center in Indio, according to jail records.
No one was hurt.
Pointing a laser at an aircraft can temporarily blind the pilot and distract the crew, Wedertz said.