In the first known case of severe injury caused by a laser pointer, a seventh-grade boy at the Maple Park Middle School in Kansas City, Mo., has suffered permanent eye damage, the Kansas City Star reported Dec. 19.

Although the level of danger posed by the misuse of laser pointers had been in dispute, fear of such an incident had already led numerous school systems and local governments around the nation to ban or restrict the devices.

"Dotting" or "red-dotting"--pointing the beam of light at someone to watch the surprised look on the person's face when the


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