Law-enforcement UAV deployment is growing so fast. “How fast is it?” you may ask – so much so, that DRONELIFE needs a two-part roundup just to capture recent headlines (Part 1 lives here). Read on…
Worchester Councilor Konstantina Lukes loves emerging technology and she hopes her fellow lawmakers will soon fall in love with public-safety drones. Lukes is asking the city’s manager to study breoad use of UAVs for public safety and other services. She also “sees the use of drones as a way of supplementing departments that are short on staff.” However, police chief Gary Gemme doesn’t share her enthusiasm and says “had the opportunity to take part in a federal grant program three years ago” for police drones and turned the grant down. “I am absolutely opposed to using drones at the local level, in an urban community such as Worcester,” Gemme said. Lukes pointed out that privacy guarantrees would be written into municipal guidelines. “We don’t want drones looking in people’s windows or spying on people,” she said. “There are protocols that need to be put in place. I am hoping Worcester can do that before, not after, these things are everywhere.”
The Crossville Police Department is proud of their new drone, a DJI Inspire V2. “The fully mobile Inspire V2 is a two-person deployment system, combining a pilot and a spotter that will enable the [department] to respond to major incidents like never before,” a police press release states. The department expects to use the V2 for search-and-rescue operations and for high resolution aerial photography of major crime scenes. Addressing privacy-violation concerns, Detective Donnie Hammons told WVLT News that the “Fourth Amendment says [police] can’t do that without probable cause and a warrant to back that.” “So, we’re not going to be looking into your window,” he added. Hammons hopes that the drone can also be used by other public-safety agencies in the county. “The fire department has use for it to see if there are hot spots in roofs, see if a fire is still going on.”
Jason is a longstanding contributor to DroneLife with an avid interest in all things tech. He focuses on anti-drone technologies and the public safety sector; police, fire, and search and rescue.
Beginning his career as a journalist in 1996, Jason has since written and edited thousands of engaging news articles, blog posts, press releases and online content.
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