Drones over St. Louis: Police Chef Wants Unmanned Flying Devices to Help Fight City Crime

David McCormack, Daily Mail (London), July 26, 2013

Citizens in St. Louis might soon have to get used to drones flying in their skies after the local police chef applied to use the unmanned devices to help fight crime.

Police chief Sam Dotson has written to the Federal Aviation Administration for approval and hopes to be using drones in the Missouri state capital within the next year.

Dotson believes the unmanned devices are a cost effective way to aid his officers, especially with police chases and monitoring large open air events.

A police chase earlier this week involving a helicopter cost the force $2.5 million, while a police drone would cost between $80,000 and $300,000, depending on features.

‘To help keep officers safe, to help keep the community safe,’ Dotson told KSDK, explaining his reason for requesting drones.

‘For monitoring public space, things like the upcoming Fair St. Louis, baseball games for terrorist, suspicious activity.’

But concerns have been voiced by the American Civil Liberties Union of Eastern Missouri, which says there are too many unanswered questions without local laws in place to protect citizen’s privacy.

‘This is a case where our technology has gotten far ahead of our laws and our ability to protect us from unwarranted government intrusion,’ ACLU executive director Jeffrey Mittman told KSDK.

‘What are we going to do with the information that we gather? Who will have access to it? How will we protect against improper access? How will we protect against hacking of the data?’

Dotson, who is expected to meet with ACLU officials on the matter, said the drones would be used in public spaces where there are already other types of surveillance cameras and so there is no expectation of privacy.


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  • Puggg

    And the SLMPD’s drones will tell us exactly what that the SLMPD’s ghetto bird doesn’t already?

    The only benefit is that drones are cheaper and more importantly quieter.

    My only worry is that they won’t use the drones to watch the black undertow, but to look for rinky dink code violations on houses that white people own.

    • MBlanc46

      Good thought. After all, you can fine someone for a code violation, but arresting a Negro for burglary or strong-arm robbery or murder will only cost the city.

    • IstvanIN

      That way they can keep crimes rates racially equitable. Arrest La’Trayvon for murder while arresting Mrs. Delinsky for leaving the lid off her trash can.

  • Manaphy

    If the fact that military drones are needed to enforce black behavior and diversity doesn’t convince you of its evil, then I don’t know what will.

  • Juan Outtamany

    all you need are curfew gates and limited access points in and out of the ghetto after sundown.
    What happens after twilight is YOUR problem, not that of polite society

    • Defiant White

      Used to be the way of things in the South. Ask the Sheriff if anything happened over the weekend and he’d just shrug and say: “Nah. Just a couple of ni**er cuttings. Nothing important.” There was no more investigation of ghetto crimes than there are any modern investigations of what happens in a monkey cage.

  • NeanderthalDNA

    Everyone has to suffer because of blacks.

    They destroy all, lower every civilization they infest. They make democracy and liberty and functional social welfare IMPOSSIBLE.

    They cost us TRILLIONS of dollars that could have been used constructively, you know, to BUILD. But the African does naught but destroy and dealing with his dim, destructive, scorpion-like nature is a drain on productive societies, an ever present down-drag opportunity cost loss.

    Destructive parasites.

    • Ed_NY

      Get rid of blacks and we will have very little crime.

  • Spartacus

    Here’s a better crime-fighting strategy – Wall up the black areas, then let them eat each other. Results guaranteed !

  • bigone4u

    Coming soon to your cable provider: THE DRONES CHANNEL, STARRING BLACK AMERICA. With its 24 hour a day live coverage of black mischief and crime, the Drones Channel is giving every cable subscriber a bird’s eye view of the action. If your cable provider does not offer The Drones Channel, contact them and demand the most entertaining experience on cable today.

    • Puggg

      We already have that, it’s BET and WSHH.

    • Luca

      An aerial version of COPS.

  • Luca

    I recommend remotely-operated drones armed with HE and napalm rounds to drop on spontaneous flash mobs with a live video feed.

    I will pay good money to either operate the drone or watch the video which should be available on pay-per-view.

    • Creepy as crackers!

      That might not be politically correct but who cares. I’d love to see it myself!

  • Sick of it

    Private citizens need to monitor the movements of the drones and the moment they capture any private activities, sue the city for 100 million dollars for violation of their 4th Amendment rights. If that gets thrown out of court, destroy the drones. It’s despicable to allow tyrants to openly act like bloody tyrants without consequences.

  • sbuffalonative

    Well, they need some way to protect themselves from each other…

  • MBlanc46

    I’m confused. Are they talking about St. Louis or the Missouri state capital, Jefferson City? Surely even the British tabloids fact check there articles. Or do they?

    • Puggg

      Probably they don’t know off the cuff that St. Louis is not the capital of the state. Once upon a time, when Missouri first became a state, St. Charles was the first capital.

      And actually, this story is about a month old.

      There’s really almost no reason to use drones in Jefferson City. It has very few non-white permanent residents. It does have an HBCU campus (Lincoln University), though.

      • MBlanc46

        I agree, I’d bet that it is ignorance. Good journalists don’t print something unless they’ve verified it. Off the cuff isn’t good enough.

  • Puggg

    Since you saw Stan Musial play, and he retired after 1963, this means the “Busch Stadium” you saw him play in was on Grand and Dodier. A part of town you wouldn’t want to be in today without a police escort.

  • Drones are already being used to watch forest fires. It seems to me that since having blacks in a city is pretty much the same thing as having a fire in a forest, the use of surveillance drones in urban areas is eminently reasonable.

    Large police departments already possess helicopters, so the use of drones isn’t a big stretch.

    • Ella

      Does ICE use Drones on the border looking for fleeing illegals and drugs runners yet? Or just want to use them on Americans namely? I think Israel builds Drones also so they can get in on the spying deal better, lol.

    • Spartacus

      Yes, but how many helicopters do most police departments have ? Two ? Three ? Drones are so inexpensive and easy to use, they’ll be able to easily have a few dozen, maybe a few hundred for the large cities . If they wanted to spy on one particular individual 24/7 it’ll be much easier with drones than with helicopters.

      • Gislia Jackson

        From the looks of some of those drones you could easily take one down with a crossman pellet gun.

        • Spartacus

          If that’s true, then what are you waiting for ? Get to work 😉

        • Using the guts of a microwave oven and an aluminum parabolic dish, it would be a very simple matter to fry the electronics in a drone.

      • Unfortunately, the US Supreme Court has already ruled (Florida vs. Riley) in 1989 that police do not need a warrant to conduct surveillance from public airspace.