A man has been arrested in Co Armagh after targeting a police helicopter with a laser.

Police were carrying out searches relating to drug dealing in north Lurgan when a laser was shined into their helicopter from the ground.

The man was then pursued by police, before he took refuge in a house after discarding the laser.

Police tracked him in their helicopter and the man was then arrested for endangering an aircraft and disorderly behaviour.

“Fantastic work by PSNI Armagh, Banbridge and Craigavon to introduce a Darwinian Award winner to the custody suite,” a PSNI spokesperson said.

“While supporting your local police who were targeting drug dealing activity in North Lurgan we were attacked by a ‘gentleman’ with a laser.

“Imagine for a second what would happen if a helicopter full of aviation fuel lost control and came down on a residential housing estate.”

The PSNI spokesperson said that the helicopter was a vital resource for the community.

“An attack on the helicopter is an attack on the community. On Friday it was up over north Lurgan helping us find Jim. Yesterday it was up helping us target drug dealers. Who knows what this week will bring. It could be stolen cars, burglars on the move, or more missing people,” the spokesperson said.

“Whatever it is, the eye in the sky is a vital tool, and risking the the crew not only puts those on the ground at risk, but damages the service we can give the whole community.”

Belfast Telegraph Digital

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