Southern California Woman Steals Drone, then Lies About It

Carlos Miller

A Southern California woman who prides herself on her community involvement

Was caught on video trying to steal a man’s drone before lying to police in claiming that it nearly killed her.

Lisa Manfredi apparently thought she was doing her good deed for the day when she picked up a remote controlled quadcopter that had crash landed in Fairview Park in Costa Mesa, then tucked it underneath her shirt as she walked away.

She also thought she was much slicker than she actually proved to be.

“Can you believe how casually I looked?” Manfredi asks a man who is identified as her husband in the video as she walks away with the drone underneath her shirt.

“That was perfect,” he says.

However, it was far from perfection considering the drone’s video camera was recording everything.

The owner of the quadcopter, who posted the video on YouTube on Wednesday where it now has 240,000 views, was also able to track it through the device’s received signal strength indicator.

Plus, there was the bulge underneath her shirt as she tried to walk away.

“Ma’am, do you have my quadcopter,” asks the owner, whose name is Alex, and who was one of several men operating drones in the park that day.

“No, I don’t,” replies Manfredi. “I don’t know what you’re talking about.”

“I think you do,” he responds.

“I don’t think I do,” she replies, already halfway admitting guilt.

“You’re going to give it to me or I’m going to call the cops,” Alex says.

“Thats fine, call the cops please,” she says, adding that she has already called the cops.

She then goes into a tirade about how the drone nearly struck her (it didn’t) and how it is illegal to fly them in the park (it’s not) and how she had grounds to sue them (she doesn’t).

She also tells police on the phone that “there’s three men following me right now,” insinuating that her safety was in danger when all they were trying to do is get her to return their property.

“You almost killed me with it,” she tells the men. “I’ll fucking sue you. I got a video of it, you dumb ass …. fuck you.”

At this point, she is obviously still not aware that the drone is recording because she is under the impression that the video she recorded earlier would be enough evidence to sue the men.

“You almost killed me,” she tells the men, still refusing to return their drone.

“I have kids, I have a family, I have all kinds of shit,” she continues.

She then claims children are unable to play in the park because the men keep flying their drones.

But Fairview Park encompasses 208 acres of open space, including a designated area where people are allowed to fly remote control planes (and copters, we assume).

Besides, the men say they had already received permission from the park to fly their drones.

“Leave me alone,” she tells them, still refusing to return their drone. “Don’t come near me.”

“My whole fucking life flashed before my eyes,” she claims, getting more dramatic by the minute.

She continues ordering them to get away from her, then cries into the phone to a dispatcher.

“Excuse me, can you please send an officer here right now? What is taking so fucking long?”

“Fucker, if you come near me, one more step, I’ll fucking kill you,” she threatens. “Leave me alone.”

Police finally arrive and she tells the officer that the drone landed within four feet of her, then starts crying about how they have been following her around the park.

But the cop, probably a Costa Mesa police officer, seemed to sense that she was off her rocker and orders her to calm down and step away.

He also returns the drone to its owners and gets their side of the story first, which was simple. The guys only wanted their drone back.

Alex says he could have filed charges against her, but decided against it.

Manfredi, who lists several community awards on her LinkedIn page, ran for the school board a few years ago, but lost to the incumbent.

She is also a PTA member and very involved with developments at Fairview Park, attending park board meetings regularly.

In fact, her plan was to show up to the next meeting with the drone before she was busted.

Hopefully, she shows up anyway to explain her illegal acts and lies.


Citizen Journalism