BALTIMORE – A Pennsylvania man faces federal charges in connection with a drone flying over M&T Bank Stadium during the Baltimore Ravens’ AFC Championship Game on Jan. 28.
Matthew Herbert, 44, of Chadds Ford, Pennsylvania, is accused of illegally using a drone during the playoff game, causing a delay.
“Illegal drone operation poses a significant security risk that will result in federal charges,” said U.S. Attorney Erek Barron. “Temporary flight restrictions are still in place during major sporting events.”
“Using a drone requires users to act responsibly and educate themselves about when and how to use them safely,” said Acting Special Agent in Charge R. Joseph Rothrock of the FBI’s Baltimore Field Office. “The FBI would like to remind the public of the potential dangers of operating a drone in violation of federal laws and regulations. Reckless use of a UAS near a large crowd can be dangerous to the public and cause interference with other law enforcement and security operations.
According to the affidavit filed in support of the criminal complaint, on January 28, the Federal Aviation Administration had placed a temporary flight restriction (“TFR”) for M&T Bank Stadium in Baltimore during the championship game of the National Football League AFC, which prevented the flight of any UAS, including the flight of a UAS under the recreational traveler exception.
A TFR temporarily prohibits certain aircraft, including a UAS, from operating within a three nautical mile radius of the stadium.
According to the Department of Justice, during the game, “the incursion of an unidentified and unapproved drone was considered a serious enough threat that NFL security temporarily suspended the game.”
Maryland State Police troopers tracked the movement of the drone directly above the stadium and deployed to the area where the drone landed, in the 500 block of South Sharp Street in Baltimore.
Hébert was at this place…