TEMECULA -While assisting officers on the ground in an unrelated investigation, the Sheriff’s Department helicopter was illuminated by a laser light from a nearby single-family residence. Over the course of several minutes, the helicopter was deliberately illuminated numerous times. The narrow beam of light discharged by a handheld laser expands at it travels and when directed at aircraft can cause severe difficulty with piloting the aircraft and in some cases cause the pilot to suffer temporary blindness.
Deputies quickly located the residence and arrested Abrahim Khan, age 20 and Shaun Khan, age 18. Both men were booked into the Southwest Jail.
Intentionally discharging (aiming) a laser at an aircraft, a violation of California Penal Code section 247.5, is a serious crime that could result in calamity for the occupants of the aircraft. The Riverside Sheriff’s Department aggressively and successfully investigates these incidents whenever reported. Any person(s) committing these crimes can be sentenced to as much as three years in a state prison.