DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) - The Dayton Police Department wants to take its crime fighting to new heights, but a group of concerned citizens may ground its efforts.
At issue is the proposed introduction of un-manned aerial aircraft equipped with sensitive cameras.
Police believe the surveillance technique could help them monitor large scale disturbances, or assist during weather emergencies or natural disasters.
The Wide Area Surveillance or WAS program could also support tactical operations like drug sweeps and be their eye in the sky tracking illegal dumping in isolated areas.
But many citizens are speaking out against the surveillance program because of privacy concerns.
"We're not afraid of technology," says group member Joel Pruce. "We know technology is coming. This is a particularly new advancement in technology that we feel requires new thinking on public policy and new protections that previous modes of technology have not."
The group wants police to get a warrant before taking any aerial surveillance. Members also want civilian oversight of the program.
City commissioners have yet to vote on the proposal that would include 120 hours of surveillance using a plane equipped with a high tech camera at a cost of $120,000.
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