Tampa Man Accused of Shining Light At Helicopter

A Tampa man has been accused of pointing a laser at a police helicopter early Sunday morning.

According to investigators, the Tampa Police Department helicopter was conducting routine flight operations at 3:40 a.m. on Sunday, when the helicopter was targeted by a blue laser being directed from a location on the ground.

The air crew was able to direct patrol units to the location where the laser shot originated and officers came into contact with a man in the backyard of the residence at 10712 N. Central Avenue, who investigators say was in possession of a blue laser.

The man, who was identified as Mark A. White, 40, was arrested for the felony criminal offense of Targeting an Aircraft with a Laser.

The FBI has been notified and is on scene now conducting a concurrent investigation for consideration of additional federal criminal charges.

Allison Leslie is a University of South Florida graduate with a bachelors degree in Mass Communications. She joined Genesis in 2016. With a passion for sports, Allison has interned with 620 WDAE, Pewter Report, Trifecta Team: St. Petersburg Bowl, Bullscast, and many other publications. Being a native to the Bay Area, she has followed and supported Tampa Bay teams her whole life.