Savannah Police Department Looking into Use of Drones for Investigations
SAVANNAH, GA. – September 3, 2018 (news4jax.com) According to an online news report from news4jax.com, the Savannah Police Department has started planning for use of drones in some of its investigations.*
Savannah Police Chief Joseph Lumpkin originally proposed the use of drones in certain police investigations, such as searches for missing persons, incidents of barricaded gunmen, and vehicle accidents. “You take a picture and you know what you see in the lens, but what prints out is just a piece of paper,” Lumpkin said. “Having that whole aerial view is amazing.”
The City of Savannah has now issued a bid for purchase of three drones, each with specialized features that vary based on the assistance provided. Their high-resolution cameras could provide a full picture of accident scenes, and their thermal imaging could pick up heat signatures to help police find missing people or suspects. The drones could also travel through inaccessible areas to show police where suspects are located or zoom in on suspicious devices to give police officers a better idea about whether they are dealing with a bomb situation.
The City of Duluth, Georgia, already started using drones in its police investigations, as has Gwinnett County, Georgia, and Henry County, Georgia. Gwinnett County Master Police Officer Michael Niziurski said his department has gained vital information from its drones and has saved money by avoiding use of helicopters in certain situations.
The drone vendor that wins the bid will also have to train Savannah officers regarding proper operation within Federal Aviation Administration requirements. The City of Savannah will hold a public meeting for citizens to gain more information about the drones and to express any concerns about their use.
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