Lighter and cheaper than a helicopter and equipped with high tech features, these vehicles are increasingly on the want list of law enforcement officials. Though none of these drones are yet in active duty, police and sheriff’s departments – more than 300 according to the Federal Aviation Administration – are adding them to their cache of public safety tools.
Using grant money from the Department of Homeland Security, officials in Montgomery County, Texas, recently purchased a $300,000 remotely piloted helicopter known as aShadowHawk. With built-in video and still cameras and infrared and nightvision sensors, the unmanned aerial vehicle, or UAV, is anticipated to greatly improve the sheriff’s department’s ability to fight crime and ensure public safety. “It’s so simple in its design and the objectives, you just wonder why anyone would choose not to have it,” Montgomery County Chief Deputy Randy McDaniel recently told KPRC.
Residents in the cities that have been testing these UAVs have voiced concerns about invasion of privacy and the worry that a robot could be flying over their heads at any moment, watching them. Montgomery County officials counter that UAV’s would only be used in specific instances. Read more.
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- absurdlakefront said: "Used only in specific instances" is one of the most abused and false phrases that emerges from nearly every law enforcement press release.
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