Andreas Meissner, 37, operated an unmanned aircraft – known as a Phantom 2 – over the marina at Lake Yellowstone on July 18. The drone crashed shortly after takeoff after appearing to suffer power loss. The drone and a video card located inside an attached GoPro camera were eventually recovered by a diver 10 days later.
The crash came a month after the National Park Service banned the use of unmanned aircraft throughout the national park system. Two other drone operators face similar federal charges.