The threat drones pose over public venues like Petco Park - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

The threat drones pose over public venues like Petco Park

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SAN DIEGO (NEWS 8) — It was a scary scene at Petco Park Sunday as a drone was spotted flying over players and fans. 

Then it crash landed into an empty seat during a Padres game.  

Fans couldn't believe what had happened. 

The FAA says flying a drone under 3,000 and within 3 miles of a Major League Baseball stadium is illegal, and the operator can be fined up to $1,437 dollars. 

"We were able to find the person responsible for the drone," said San Diego Police Lieutenant Scott Wahl. 

He said officers actually approached the operator - before the drone crashed - and told him to bring it back immediately. But the operator told police he no longer had control of it. 

"So he had lost track of it," said Wahl. "He had no GPS connection and didn't know where it was at."       

Police say they're convinced the operator had no malicious intentions. 

But after the terrorist explosion at Monday's Ariana Grande concert in England, Sunday's drone incident at Petco takes on a new level of concern.   

Police say preventing a terrorist attack with a drone at a huge sports venue has to start with the drone manufacturers installing software that automatically downs a drown that flies into a restricted area. 

"Certainly that would go a long ways in helping for those that have bad intent in mind," said Wahl. "This individual clearly didn't - he just wasn't using common sense." 

Lt. Wahl says the city is currently in the process of adopting new drone rules that will go into effect next month.   

Since there's nothing on the books right now, the operator from Sunday's incident will not face any criminal charges.

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