Pineville Police Department launching new drone for added safety
PINEVILLE, La. (KALB) - The Pineville Police Department has launched a new drone program as a new tool to help fight crime.
This drone will provide Pineville police the ability to fight crime from the sky, but it also adds an element of safety for the officers and can even aid in locating missing persons.
The city introduced the drone to its Patrol Division, to expand and supplement the resources the department currently uses.
From up to 10,000 feet in the air, the drone can feed real-time information to officers on the ground. The drone has infrared and thermal capabilities, license plate readers and can arrive at a scene before the officers, giving them the ability to assess a situation before they respond.
“Anytime we have anybody that is lost, anybody that we are looking for, we are going to be able to deploy this drone,” said Chief Darrell Basco. “They make it safer for our officers, make it safer for the public and that is what it is about, increasing information and technology, and utilizing 21st-century policing, exceptional policing every day.”
Using capital, the department was able to secure the drone for around $12,000, a small price to pay for the results they said this technology will bring.
To date, the drone has led to locating a missing person and is currently aiding in two active investigations. So far, the city has two officers who can fly the drone. One of them is Detective John Moreno, who said the drone is technology that is vital for modern policing.
“It is video,” said Moreno. “It brings a lot of transparency to what we do and do not do. I have about 18 years’ experience in aviation. The drone itself is unreal, technology has come a long way. It has a lot of abilities that in the past year or two did not exist.”
Basco added that they are not just allowed to fly them over random houses or watch people.
“Any use of the drone has to have approval and is subject to the search warrant standards mandated by the state,” he said.
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