BLANCHARD, La. (KTAL/KMSS) – A Blanchard woman is accused of unlawfully aiming a laser at a Baltimore police helicopter while the crew was on a training flight.

Blanchard police arrested 44-year-old April Poitras of the 7600 block of Highway 1 after the Baltimore Police flight crew members reported that someone on the ground aimed a green laser at them during their flight training from Metro Aviation, the company that built their aircraft.

A patrol deputy assisted with the call which initially went to the Blanchard Police Department.

The helicopter shined its spotlight and led Deputy Jones to the suspected laser pointers home. When he arrived he found Poitras pointing a green laser light at the aircraft and the ground.

He placed her into his patrol car until Blanchard police arrived.

Poitras will face one count of unlawful aiming of a laser at an aircraft.

According to the FAA, there were more than 9,400 laser-related incidents reported to the agency. They say laser strikes remain a serious threat to aviation safety, pose a safety threat to pilots, and violate federal laws. According to the agency’s website, “many high-powered lasers can incapacitate pilot flying aircraft that may be carrying hundreds of passengers.”

Those who violate Federal Aviation Regulations by shining lasers at aircraft can impose civil penalties of up to $11,000 per violation. The FAA has imposed civil penalties of up to $30,800 against people for multiple laser incidents.