First Charged With Misdemeanor, Garland Man Faces Federal Time For Pointing Laser at Planes

Back in June, you may recall, KXAS-Channel 5 ran an interview with one Sammy Ladymon of Garland, who was busted for shining a green laser into the cockpit of a Southwest plane bound for Love Field -- right before he did the same thing to an FBI pilot on his way to investigate the first complaint, brilliant. Said Ladymon, the first local man arrested for using a laser pointer to interfere with an aircraft, he was just "tired of circling helicopters." So he whipped out the laser pointer, originally purchased, he said, to point out stars in the night sky. As Scott Gordon reported:

Ladymon is charged with illumination of an aircraft by intense light, a misdemeanor. He said he cannot pay his $1,000 bail because he has no family or friends willing to help him.
Turns out, though, the 45-year-old was arrested again earlier this month: According to the U.S. Attorney's Office, Sammy Don Ladymon was hauled in again on October 21 -- for the same June incident -- after having been charged in a federal indictment with one count of interference with an aircraft. Released on bond shortly thereafter, Ladymon now faces a December 19 trial in front of U.S. District Judge Jorge Solis. If convicted, the statutory maximum penalty for that particular crime is 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine. Says the U.S. Attorney's Office via press release: "He is the first person to be charged in a federal indictment in the Northern District of Texas with that offense."

KEEP THE DALLAS OBSERVER FREE... Since we started the Dallas Observer, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Dallas, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.
Robert Wilonsky
Contact: Robert Wilonsky