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Press Release

Bakersfield Man Indicted for Laser Strikes of Sheriff’s Helicopter

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Eastern District of California

FRESNO, Calif. — Alejandro Galvan-Silvestre, 23, of Bakersfield, was arrested today, charged with knowingly aiming the beam of a laser pointer at Air One, a Kern County Sheriff’s Office helicopter, U.S. Attorney Phillip A. Talbert announced.

A federal grand jury returned the indictment on Aug. 25, 2022. It was unsealed today after Galvan-Silvestre’s arrest. According to court documents, on Sept. 5, 2021, Galvan-Silvestre aimed the beam of a laser pointer at Air One.

This case is the product of an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Kern County Sheriff’s Office, and the Bakersfield Police Department. Assistant U.S. Attorney Karen Escobar is prosecuting the case.

If convicted, Galvan-Silvestre faces a maximum statutory penalty of five years in prison and a $250,000 fine. Any sentence, however, would be determined at the discretion of the court after consideration of any applicable statutory factors and the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, which take into account a number of variables. The charges are only allegations; the defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.

Updated September 12, 2022