Florida state senator wants to limit drone use by police - FOX 35 News Orlando

Florida state senator wants to limit drone use by police

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Drones are used by our military to spy on or even kill terrorists, but one Republican Florida lawmaker says we need to be careful on how we use them here in the United States.

Senator Joe Negron spoke with FOX 35 over the phone on Monday from his office in Tallahassee.

"I don't think they should be used to spy on the lawful activities of Floridians," he said.  "We are a country that values individual liberty and our personal privacy, and so I don't think it should be a standard practice for our government to have drones hovering in the sky."

That's why Senator Negron introduced a bill that would prevent police from using the unmanned aircraft without a warrant.  Under Negron's proposal, if people find out police are using drones without warrants, these people would be able to sue the agency, and the evidence gathered wouldn't be admissible.

"It's great technology," said Daytona Beach Police Chief Mike Chitwood said.  "Clearly if you look just from the natural disasters here in Florida -- hurricanes, wildfires, tornadoes -- to be able to launch a drone to do that recon work for us, it's just an incredible tool.  Not to mention you can use it for car breaks in parking lots, and my big thing is in the future we might be able to use it for pursuits."

Chitwood added, "What I don't want to see happen is, you have this great technology, and because people are fearful of what the negative sides are, they throw the baby out with the bath water."

Chitwood said he'll wait until Congress sorts out the drone issue before buying any for his department.



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