VANDALIA, Mo. (KMIZ)
A Vandalia man was arrested and charged after he allegedly tried to ram a law enforcement drone with a drone of his one on Tuesday evening.
Ryan Breden, 40, was charged with first-degree property damage and obstructing government operations. He was arrested but was released on conditions. An initial court appearance is set for 9 a.m. Tuesday, Nov. 14, at the Audrain County Courthouse.
According to the probable cause statement, a city-wide power outage took place on Monday and Tuesday. Around 1:03 a.m. Tuesday, Breden and a woman were contacted by Audrain County Sheriff’s deputies near the intersection of Woodlawn and Maple streets, the statement says. He was described as “uncooperative” by deputies and learned the sheriff’s office was using a drone.
According to the probable cause statement, outage was scheduled for maintenance of the city's electric infrastructure. An email from the sheriff’s office indicated that crews were replacing an “outdated and damaged electric substation.”
Around 10:26 p.m. Tuesday, the sheriff’s office was using a drone when a second drone took off in Vandalia, the statement says. The statement says the drone was operated “in an obvious attempt to cause a collision or crash of the Sheriff's Office UAS (unmanned aircraft system).” The detective operating the sheriff’s office drone was able to evade and avoid the collision.
The sheriff’s office described the maneuver as an “attack” on its Facebook page. The sheriff’s office was able to find the owner of the drone with an infrared camera, the post states. Breden was allegedly seen quickly walking towards his residence with the drone.
An email from the sheriff’s office states that the department first thought Breden didn’t see the sheriff’s office’s drone, but he allegedly used his drone to chase the sheriff’s office’s drone shortly after.
The sheriff’s office was able to find the Breden with an infrared camera, the Facebook post states. Breden was allegedly seen quickly walking towards his residence with his drone and control system.
Breden allegedly told deputies that he made his drone charge at the sheriff’s office’s drone because he thought it belonged to a friend.