Man charged with felony for allegedly flying drone over electrical substation

December 15, 2023


Man charged with felony for allegedly flying drone over electrical substation

BENONA TOWNSHIP — A 62-year-old man was arrested by the Oceana County Sheriff’s Office for a felony of flying/hovering an unmanned aircraft over a key facility.

Donald Ray Muckel is accused of flying or hovering his drone over a Wolverine Power Cooperative electrical substation, “which by statute is a key facility,” said Oceana County Prosecutor Joseph Bizon.

The incident occurred Nov. 17 around noon at a substation located on South 48th Avenue, said Bizon. “It is unlawful for a person to fly or hover through or over what are known as key facilities.

“It was called in, and an officer responded. After responding, the officer submitted a report to our office. We believe that the charges are appropriate. He is presumed innocent until proven otherwise.”

According to his Facebook page, Muckel owns a company named Michigan Drone Photos. However, no such entity is registered with the Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (LARA).

A preliminary exam is set for Jan. 2 at 1 p.m. Bail was set at $5,000/personal recognizance.



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