CHARLOTTE, NC - Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police have charged a man after a CMPD helicopter almost collided with a drone late Thursday night while they were in pursuit of a wanted suspect.
Officers with CMPD were operating a helicopter on Thursday around 12:40 a.m. near Central Avenue and Sharon Amity Road searching for a wanted suspect. The officers were notified of a drone in the area. The officers had to alternate their flight path so they did not crash into the drone.
Christopher Baucom was asked to immediately land the drone and refused to comply with officers at first. He eventually landed the drone, according to officers on the ground.
According to CMPD, drones are required to be registered with the FAA. The FAA prohibits the flight of drones at night, in any environment or altitude. The FAA also requires the drone operator to to show their aircraft registration and government I.D. when asked by officers.
Officers say Baucom refused to show registration and I.D. and told them he did not need to comply with them.
Baucom was arrested and charged with interference with manned aircraft by unmanned aircraft system and resist. They also found out he had been listening to police radio traffic and he told the officers he drove to the scene to fly over the helicopter and get video footage of their pursuit.