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Virginia Individual Pleads Guilty to Operating Unregistered UAS

On November 5, 2021, in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Virginia, James Russell Weeks III pleaded guilty to one count of operating an unregistered aircraft following a March 25 indictment by grand jury. The investigation determined that on July 25, 2019, an unregistered Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS) approached firefighters outside at the Salem Fire Department, harassed them, and followed the firefighters into the fire station. The UAS crashed inside the building and was confiscated by the Salem Police Department. Later that day, Weeks went to the police station and self-identified as the owner of the UAS.
DOT-OIG is conducting this investigation with the Salem, Virginia Police Department.