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Laser pointing at aircraft could be tried locally

PHOENIX — The Arizona House has approved a bill that would allow county
attorneys to prosecute people charged with pointing a laser at aircraft.

The bill sponsored by Tucson Republican Rep. Ethan Orr would make pointing a
laser at aircraft a class 5 felony. The measure would not apply to people under
the age of 19.

Pointing a laser at aircraft is already a federal offense. But Orr says federal
prosecutors rarely go after offenders and that he wants to give local
prosecutors “more teeth.”

The Federal Aviation Administration reported nearly 4,000 incidents of lasers
being pointed at aircraft in 2013, a more than 40 percent increase since 2010.

The House passed the bill 58-2 on Tuesday. It now goes to the Senate.


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