The San Diego County Sheriff’s Department had a new eye in the sky during an Oct. 13 standoff.
A man who poured gasoline on himself refused to leave his truck after leading law enforcement on a chase through North County. Deputies surrounded the suspect not far from Pala Casino, guns drawn. Several hours passed.
Looking for a closer view, the Sheriff’s Department debuted its new drone, which it acquired as part of a one-year pilot program that quietly began in September. The live footage aided a SWAT team in developing a tactical plan before approaching, and then apprehending the suspect, a Sheriff’s Department spokesman said.
But the pilot program, which includes four camera-equipped drones, has flown under the public’s radar.
It didn’t go before an elected body and community meetings weren’t held, flying in the face of earlier advice from the local ACLU chapter.
The Sheriff’s Department in February informed the ACLU that it was considering a pilot drone program. The ACLU urged the agency to seek input from the public and the San Diego County Board of Supervisors, which controls the Sheriff’s Department budget.
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UAVs (drones) are merely an additional surveillance tool. Sheriffs do not need to clear changing or adding specific tools with the public. Should they use Glocks or Colts? Fords or Chevys? A cop in a patrol car can use a video camera to view people out in public; drones do the same thing.
The only issue is what happens to any recordings of the surveillance.
They already have a nice squadron of helicopters ... they are expensive to operate ... if they use the drones to monitor criminal behavior or track suspects like they use helicopters, I see nothing wrong with it, it will save a lot of money and probably be more efficient ..
You jokers crack me up. Classic low-IQ Dianne Jacob and company -- what could possibly go wrong? ROFLMAO