YouTube drone video turns into mysterious police visit

What started as an innocent post to YouTube by a drone operator of a local mountain biking club turned into a visit by possible fake police officers.

Drone hobbyist Adam Crouchley used a DJI Phantom to shoot footage of the Hamilton Mountain Bike Club, which was shared on their Facebook page and to his YouTube account on Feb. 27.

The next morning, Crouchley awoke to police at his door, informing him someone lodged a complaint about him and that ‘the DJI Phantom is a bad quadcopter.’

“He continued to try and educate me about how the compass and GPS works, by feeding me information that was incorrect anyway,” Crouchley wrote on his blog. “I thought it was really unusual that the police officer was making a point about this particular machine of mine.”

It turns out, the officers that came to his door were not assigned to come to his door, and there was no job lodged with the police department or the Civil Aviation Authority to talk to him.

At one point, Crouchley considered they may not have even been real police officers.

“This is getting weird,” he wrote in a blog post Tuesday.

Turns out they were real police officers, but they were following up on complaints from Feb. 18 and 19. The footage officers referenced wasn’t posted until Feb. 27.

Was this an honest police mistake, or is this just one example of rising tensions between drone hobbyists and law enforcement?

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