- The Washington Times - Thursday, September 18, 2014

A New York Police Department helicopter searching the 800-foot skies above the city for a missing teenage girl nearly collided with a drone — and shortly after, the operator was arrested.

The chopper was hovering over a street in Brooklyn when it was forced — in the 1 a.m. darkness — to swerve and change course because of the sudden appearance of a drone, the New York Post reported.

Police were notified and shortly after arrested Isaac Rosa, 34, for illegally operating the device, a remote-controlled DJI Phantom 2 Quadcopter that’s outfitted with a GoPro camera, sources said to the newspaper.

“These drones pose a safety threat to aircrafts and the people on board because the pilots do not know they are in their flight pattern,” one law enforcement source said, the New York Post reported.

Mr. Rosa was arraigned and released on $1,000 bail — though he argued that flying the drone wasn’t against law.

“I am very disappointed that they are trying to make an example out of me,” he said, the newspaper reported. “At the end of the day, this is not an illegally activity.”

The New York Post reported that Mr. Rosa has posted on Facebook other pictures he’s taken of sky shots on sites near La Guardia Airport. The FAA is soon to introduce new laws regarding drone use, but so far has a “model aircraft” policy that prohibits operation of the remote-controlled devices within five miles of an airport without first obtaining permission.

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