Man Arrested After Dropping Fliers From Drone Over Bay Area Stadiums

A 55-year-old man was arrested Sunday after he flew a drone over both Levi's Stadium in Santa Clara and the Coliseum in Oakland and dropped fliers during NFL games, according to the Santa Clara Police Department.

The drone flew over the south end of Levi's Stadium during the second quarter of the San Francisco 49ers game against the Seattle Seahawks, police Lt. Dan Moreno said. The device dropped leaflets with some sort of message about free speech and "railing against television stations," he said.

Police on Monday identified the suspect as Tracy Mapes of Sacramento.

After the first reports came in, police launched an investigation, along with federal, state and local law enforcement, including the FBI, CHP and neighboring county and city agencies. They eventually caught up with Mapes in Oakland, where he was reported to have deployed the drone over the Raiders game against the Denver Broncos, also dropping leaflets.

Mapes illegally flew a drone near an airport with aircraft overhead and violated a Santa Clara city ordinance that prohibits flying a drone within 500 yards of Levi's Stadium, Moreno said.

Moreno said because of the wind, few fliers landed inside the stadium, and authorities did not provide copies of the fliers.

Oakland police may have recovered the drone, he said.

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