‘Delusional’ bloke shone laser beam at police helicopter thinking it was a UFO

A man pointed a laser beam at a police helicopter because he thought it "was some sort of alien craft", a court has heard.

Timothy Wilsdon, 62, from Blockley, Cotswolds, pleaded not guilty to shining the lights at the pilot and said that he was delusional at the time due to a medical condition.

Cirencester Courthouse heard how he answered the door to the police officers while he was naked and apologised before handing over the laser pen, which he uses to entertain his cats outside.

Mr Wilsdon said: "I’d not experienced anything like this before. I may have shone the laser a number of times at the helicopter but at the time I didn’t know what it was, I was trying to work out what it was.

"Whatever it was I thought it was going to crash. The lights kept changing colour.

"I had a laser pen and used it like a torch to try and identify what it was up there. I thought it was a UFO because of the coloured lights coming from it."

Prosecutor Graham Dono said the National Police Air Service helicopter had been called out by Gloucestershire Police who were searching for two burglary suspects in the early hours of November 13, 2020.

The court heard that Mr Wilsdon has previously suffered from mental health issues and had been a patient at Wotton Lawn Psychiatric Hospital in Gloucester after his daughter committed suicide nine years ago.

His 19-year-old son had also died just before the laser beam incident took place, reports Daily Mail.

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It was reported that Mr Wilsdon was diagnosed with hemochromatosis, which allegedly made him delusional because his thinking processes had been affected.

Psychiatrist Dr John Pilgram said: "At the time of the incident Mr Wilsdon was suffering jointly from a depressive disorder and post traumatic stress disorder. However, this diagnosis would not have had a direct bearing on his behaviour that day."

The doctor said he could have been experiencing cognitive impairment because there was deficiency of B12 in his blood.

District Judge Wattam highlighted that the dad was unable to receive treatment due to the pandemic and found Wilsdon not guilty.

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