As Police Drones Take Off, Washington State Pushes Back
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Last year, Seattle became one of the nation's first cities to buy unmanned drones for use by the police department. Public reaction was less "Gee-whiz" than "What the heck?"
The phrase "unmanned drones" typically conjures images of places like Afghanistan. But the Federal Aviation Administration says it wants to start testing the civilian use of aerial drones here in the U.S. and has already issued special permits to a few police departments interested in trying them out.
But after a raucous Seattle City Council hearing earlier this month, the mayor killed the drone program. The controversy has now moved to the state capitol.
In a packed hearing room in Olympia, privacy activist Sam Bellomio is proud to say he was one of those who helped to ground the drones in Seattle.