Florida man accused of pointing lasers as planes landed, injuring pilot

Charlie Chapman Jr.
Posted at 5:10 AM, Jan 27, 2020
and last updated 2020-01-27 05:19:03-05

SARASOTA, Fla. (AP) -- Authorities say a man pointed lasers at planes trying to land at a Florida airport and injured a pilot.

Manatee County Sheriff's Office say Charlie Chapman Jr. aimed his laser pointer toward a plane four times and toward a sheriff's helicopter once as they tried to land last week at Sarasota Bradenton Airport.

MORE: Man accused of pointing laser at Martin County Sheriff's Office helicopter

One pilot said the laser hit him directly in the eyes, causing temporary blindness and lingering blurred vision.

The Orlando Sentinel reports a video also shows a man appearing to throw objects at the sheriff's helicopter as it tried to land.

Deputies used a stun gun to subdue Chapman after they said he swung a hammer in their direction.