Case dismissed. George Steinmetz gets his DJI Mavic 2 Pro back!

Back in April, as he was taking aerial photos of the mass burials on Hart Island, award-winning National Geographic and Times photographer, George Steinmetz had his DJI Mavic 2 Pro drone confiscated by the New York Department (NYPD).

Update: There has been some confusion as to what drone exactly was confiscated. An earlier version of this article mentioned it was a Obsidian. I emailed George Steinmetz and he replied saying that it was indeed a DJI Mavic 2 Pro as we originally reported.

It was a Mavic 2 Pro. – George

Case dismissed. George Steinmetz gets his DJI Mavic 2 Pro back!

Kara Murphy reports for DPReview that Steinmetz was issued a desk ticket for violating.

NYC Administrative Code § 10–126, which prohibits the takeoff and landing of drones within New York City.

A preliminary hearing was scheduled for early August. The NYPD, however, had kept Steinmetz's drone DJI Mavic 2 Pro as evidence, forcing the famous aerial photographer to buy a new drone.

Steinmetz ended up buying two new DJI Mavic 2 Pro drones after an unsuccessful attempt to get the Mavic 2 drone back from the NYPD. He explained, “I need to get back to work.” Steinmetz added:

‘The Mavic 2 Pro is in a real sweet spot for me. I prefer the optics and files from the big bird, the Inspire 2 with the X7 gimbal. But the Mavic 2 flies really well, has a decent file…the compactness is quite revolutionary.'

Fortunately, the story ended well as Steinmetz recently and suddenly got his drone back from the NYPD. He told DPReview that:

‘My case was spontaneously dismissed last week [the week of August 7th, 2020], so I went down to the Bronx Police HQ on Wednesday and recovered it. During the time it was confiscated I had to buy a replacement to keep working, and don't know if I will pursue any further action.'

Stay in touch!

If you'd like to stay up to date with all the latest drone news, scoops, rumors, and reviews, then follow us on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, Instagram or…

Subscribe to our Daily Drone News email.*

Submit tips If you have information or tips that you would like to share with us, feel free to submit them hereSupport You can support by using these links when you make your next drone purchase: Adorama, Amazon, B&H, BestBuy, eBay, DJI, Parrot, and Yuneec. We make a small commission when you do so at no additional expense to you. Thank you for helping DroneXL grow! FTC: uses affiliate links that generate income.* We do not sell, share, rent out or spam your email, ever. Our email goes out on weekdays around 5:30 p.m.

Photo: NY Post

Discover more from DroneXL

Subscribe to get the latest posts to your email.


Proposed legislation threatens your ability to use drones for fun, work, and safety. The Drone Advocacy Alliance is fighting to ensure your voice is heard in these critical policy discussions.Join us and tell your elected officials to protect your right to fly.

Drone Advocacy Alliance
Follow us on Google News!

Get your Part 107 Certificate

Pass the test and take to the skies with the Pilot Institute. We have helped thousands of people become airplane and commercial drone pilots. Our courses are designed by industry experts to help you pass FAA tests and achieve your dreams.

pilot institute dronexl

Copyright © 2024. All rights reserved. The content, images, and intellectual property on this website are protected by copyright law. Reproduction or distribution of any material without prior written permission from is strictly prohibited. For permissions and inquiries, please contact us first.

FTC: is an Amazon Associate and uses affiliate links that can generate income from qualifying purchases. We do not sell, share, rent out, or spam your email.

Haye Kesteloo
Haye Kesteloo

Haye Kesteloo is the Editor in Chief and Founder of, where he covers all drone-related news, DJI rumors and writes drone reviews, and, for all news related to electric vehicles. He is also a co-host of the PiXL Drone Show on YouTube and other podcast platforms. Haye can be reached at haye @ or @hayekesteloo.

Articles: 3582


  1. It was the DJI Inspire 2 that was confiscated…. He says that in his quote. Look it up, the remote controller for the Inspire 2 is also the remote controller he is holding in the top cover photo.

    • I emailed George yesterday to clear this up. It was in fact the M2P as we reported in our original article back in April.

  2. It was not his Inspire 2. Read the follow up comment with him confirming the Mavic 2 was confiscated. He even mentions he both a replacement because even though he prefers the Inspire 2 with X7 gimbal/camera the smaller drone fills a niche fir hin.

    The initial reporting confused the issue of which drone by mentioning the Phantom series.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.