Tuesday 20th June | by Cop(ex) | Follow us on Twitter @ES_Humour |
Darren Kenyon banged up for eight months after startling Pilot with Laser pen whilst the helicopter was flying over Manchester City Centre
A Judge has revealed how Darren Kenyon, aged 48, could have caused a ‘catastrophe’ after he deliberately shone a laser pen at a Police helicopter as it flew over Manchester City Centre.
Kenyon was sentenced to 8 months after he admitted using the device which had been purchased by one of his sons whilst on holiday in Spain.
Captain Nigel Judge, who was in charge of the helicopter at the time, said that he could have become dazzled by the laser and that there was no-one else that could have taken control of the aircraft had he of been incapacitated by the laser beam.
Captain Judge, who was assisting Police units on the ground in their search for a stolen car, was able to stay in control after the aircraft despite being targeted by Kenyon.
Presiding Judge Anthony Cross QC said that Kenyon’s behaviour was ‘serious conduct’
“Little imagination is needed to comprehend how a catastrophe could occur” he said.
“Particularly in your case this helicopter was being flown over a busy City Centre”.
“The brutal reality of all this, is that on this particular night you chose to shine that light at that helicopter for a very considerable period of time.”
Simon Barrett, prosecuting, told the Court how on November 1 2017, at around 2140, one of the two police officers on board with the pilot noticed that a laser was being shone at the helicopter.
Captain Judge immediately dropped the visor of his helmet when the message was relayed to him by the crew, as he was concerned that he could become dazzled or disorientated by the laser beam.
The highly-trained crew were able to trace where the laser was coming from using their on-board high-powered night vision camera (FLIR).
The beam was being shone approximately 500m away by Kenyon from his home address in Edmund Street, Salford.
Ground units were sent to the address and Kenyon was subsequently arrested by Officers having been directed to the property by the Air Crew.
Kenyon was later interviewed by Police and apologised to the officers concerned who were in the Police Helicopter at the time.
Defending Kenyon in Court, Carolyn Smith said that the Laser pen, which Smith stated could be used for ‘various innocuous reasons’, had been purchased whilst on a family holiday to Spain.
Ms Smith, who said Kenyon’s actions were ‘unbelievably stupid’, said the pen had been in the house for a couple of years and that the defendant was ‘playing with it’.
The court heard that Kenyon, who has six children, is set to have another child as his partner is pregnant.
Ms Smith appealed to the Court for any prison sentence to be suspended so Kenyon could ‘care for his family’.
But no-nonsense Judge Cross sent Kenyon straight to Prison, after he pleaded guilty to one count of recklessly acting in a manner likely to endanger an aircraft.
Needless to say, that Kenyon will be recognised for his silliness in the next issue of our subscriber-only fortnightly digital magazine, under the suitably titled ‘C__kwomble’ award section.
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