Man arrested after drone crashes into Empire State Building

© Stephanie Keith
A man who was using a camera drone to take aerial pictures of Manhattan was arrested after accidentally flying his device into the Empire State building.

A man who had been using a camera drone to take aerial pictures of Manhattan was arrested after accidentally flying his device into the Empire State Building.

Around 8:00pm on Thursday, 27-year-old Sean Riddle of New Jersey crashed his small drone into the 40th floor of New York’s famous 102-story skyscraper, and it fell to a ledge on the 36th floor. No injuries or property damage were reported, according to the New York Police Department.

He then tweeted that security in the building took his drone, and he was with them trying to get it back.

Instead of helping, however, security in the Empire State Building called the police on him. He now faces charges of reckless endangerment, criminal mischief and illegally navigating an aircraft over the city, police said. It's unclear if the drone was ever retrieved.

The incident falls at a time when federal, state and local authorities are wrangling with the issue of regulating the operation of unmanned aircraft due to concerns over security. In December, the Federal Aviation Administration announced a measure that would require drone owners to register their devices before February 19 or face penalties.