Less than a week after a man was arrested in Hunting Park for shining a laser pointer at a Philadelphia Police helicopter in midflight, a man in Fairhill was arrested for shining one into the eye of an officer as he drove his squad car, police said.
A sergeant in the 25th District was responding to a call for backup around 9:30 p.m. Tuesday on Mutter Street near Somerset, when a blinding light caused him to slam on the brakes.
“When he was able to regain his sight, he noticed that somebody was shining a laser directly in to his line of vision,” said Capt. Frank Vanore, supervising officer of the 25th District.
That somebody, Francisco Gonzalez-Rosado, 41, of Mascher Street near Somerset, now faces aggravated-assault charges.
Gonzalez-Rosado was stopped about a half-block away, Vanore said. Police recovered the laser pointer and arrested him.
The officer was not injured, Vanore said, adding that he is unsure whether this type of assault on police is becoming a new phenomenon.
“We just want to make sure people know it’s not a game,” he said. “It's just as dangerous to do this at a moving vehicle — of course, a helicopter will do much more damage.”
He was referring to the incident July 27 in which Brian Lawhon, 24, of Hunting Park, allegedly beamed his laser at a helicopter, temporarily blinding two cops inside.
Lawhon was arrested on 6th Street near Lycoming, which is also in the 25th district.