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Why is a Los Angeles drone pilot facing a one-year prison sentence?

Answer: for flying too close to a police helicopter

According to a statement from a Los Angeles city attorney, the city is pressing criminal charges against Martin Sheldon for "two counts of obstructing a peace officer in the lawful performance of his duties."

Sheldon, the city charges, was found operating his drone from a parking lot along Sunset Boulevard in Hollywood while a nearby police helicopter was surveying a crime scene below. The helicopter made an "evasive move" and was required to "break off its search for the suspect on the ground" to avoid hitting Sheldon's drone, the city reported.

"Using a drone to interfere with a police investigation places our officers and the public at serious risk," City Attorney Mike Feuer said in a statement. "My office will hold those who recklessly operate these devices accountable for their actions."