Teen arrested after shining laser at Osceola County deputy helicopter, cops say

KISSIMMEE, Fla. - An Osceola County teen was arrested Monday night on accusations of shining a laser at a sheriff's helicopter.

Jasiel Medina-Quintana, 17, was arrested on charges of misuse of laser lighting devices.

Deputies said the pilot reported being temporarily blinded by the laser.

Deputies went to Quintana's home on Dixie Lane in Kissimmee, where he told deputies he was playing in the backyard and shining the laser into the sky, but did not realize it was illegal to shine a laser at an aircraft.

Neighbors came to the teenagers defense.  "I buy them for my grandkids all the time," Joanne King said.  

King live across the street from Medina-Quintana and says he shouldn't have been arrested.  

"What are they going to do?  Arrest every kid who has a laser pointer?" she asked.  

A spokesperson for the Sheriff's office says pointing lasers at aircraft presents a serious public safety issue.  

"We want citizens to know that it causes a potential dangerous serious situation for those pilots when they cant see in the sky," Twis Lizasuain said.  

Misusing a laser is a third degree felony in Florida.

Quintana was booked into the Osceola County Jail.  He was later released into his mother's custody.

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