Missing: Laser Cannon; If Found, Call FBI

By Omar Villafranca
|  Tuesday, Jan 25, 2011  |  Updated 1:59 PM CDT
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The 2-foot-long device was stolen from a truck in <a title=Denton last week." />

Omar Villafranca, NBCDFW.com

The 2-foot-long device was stolen from a truck in Denton last week.

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It sounds like something from a sci-fi movie, but it's real. And someone stole it.

Denton police are trying to locate a stolen laser cannon. The device was taken from a truck on Friday afternoon.

"It's kind of new to us. I've never heard of a laser cannon until today," Officer Ryan Grelle said.

The laser is used as a measuring device in the train business. It can measure distance to make sure train rails are even.

The name "laser cannon" might sound funny, but the theft is no laughing matter. Denton police notified the FBI and the Federal Aviation Administration of the theft because of the laser's strength.

Detectives and the laser cannon owner, Kansas City Southern, didn't want to comment on the capability of the laser cannon.

But detectives would say that the laser has a long range. Investigators said they worry that the laser could be pointed at aircraft, potentially blinding a pilot.

"With the little laser pointers that you can buy, they're worried about those," Grelle said. "But with this, they're really concerned about it."

The device was in a yellow protective case and is about 2 feet long. It's valued at roughly $12,000.

Even though the Super Bowl is in North Texas next month, authorities said they don't think the device is a threat. The laser cannon is not weaponized.

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