Illinois State Police Apprehend Laser Suspects Targeting O’Hare Aircraft: FAA Launches Investigation


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BERKELEY, IL – Illinois State Police swiftly responded to a distressing incident involving laser activity aimed at aircraft in the vicinity. 

Eyewitnesses at O’Hare Air Traffic Control reported individuals deliberately pointing a potent green laser at planes passing through the airspace, including a trooper air vehicle. Fortunately, the suspects were apprehended by Berkeley Police a short time later at a home on Sunnyside Drive. The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) is actively investigating this disturbing occurrence.

Leading to the arrest, multiple airliners departing O’Hare reported being hit by the lasers.

According to a 2022 FAA study, laser strikes on aircraft have seen a staggering surge of over 41% nationwide. Pilots, who bear witness to these harrowing incidents, have shared stories of temporary blindness and even experiencing bouts of nausea due to the blinding effects of laser strikes. Such occurrences pose a substantial threat to the safety of aviation.

In light of these escalating incidents, the FAA strongly urges the public’s cooperation in promptly reporting any laser-related activities that endanger air travel. The swift action of law-abiding citizens is crucial in curbing this hazardous trend.

It is vital to understand that aiming a laser at an aircraft is not just an act of recklessness but a federal crime. Both U.S. law enforcement agencies and the FAA possess the authority to pursue criminal and civil prosecution against individuals who engage in such dangerous behavior. Those who maliciously shine lasers at aircraft not only put lives at risk but also face severe penalties. The FAA imposes fines of up to $11,000 per violation and a staggering $30,800 for repeated laser incidents.


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