San Diego Harbor Police Hit by Laser While on Patrol

Byline: The Log Staff

San Diego Harbor Police Hit by Laser While on Patrol

SAN DIEGO — Two San Diego Harbor Police officers on night patrol on San Diego Bay were caught off guard May 4 by a laser beam that seemed to be pointed right at them.

The incident occurred at approximately 8:30 p.m., when Officer Robert Twardy and his partner were on routine patrol near the Shelter Island Fishing Pier. Twardy said someone pointed a green laser at them, causing injuries to him and his partner — whose name has not been released.

The officers described the laser as coming from a hill between Canon and Talbot streets, below Catalina Boulevard at Point Loma. The Port of San Diego Harbor Police Department is requesting the public’s help in obtaining information on the laser pointing incident.

Twardy said he believes that the laser was being operated manually, as it was tracking the boat as it was moving through the water. He also noted that he was not sure whether the laser originated from inside a building or from the street.

Green lasers can harm delicate human eye tissue and can cause lasting injuries. One of the injured Harbor Police officers was temporarily blinded and was taken off duty for several days, to recover.

Recently there have been a number of incidents in which lasers have been pointed at aircraft, but this incident was the first reported that involved a boat. There is a great danger of a collision, injury and death if the operator of a vessel or an aircraft is blinded by a laser, Harbor Police said.

The Harbor Police Department is looking for anyone who can provide information on the location or identity of the individual responsible for the May 4 incident. Citizens are asked to call (619) 686-8000 with any tips that could lead to apprehension of those responsible for the officers’ injuries.

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