NYPD Ponders Deploying Drones to Fight Crime

Officials with the New York Police Department believe that drones could help the city combat crime as well as help the fire department determine the extent of a fire.

NEW YORK – The New York Police Department (NYPD) is considering using drones and gunshot detectors to monitor the city and fight crime.

The unmanned aerial system machines equipped with cameras and tiny microphones would be used to spy on crime hotspots. Additionally, city officials believe the drones could help the fire department determine the extent of a fire, New York Daily News reports.

The NYPD has yet to deploy a drone, but the department is aware that many do not support using the technology, as many citizens have voiced their concerns about privacy rights.

Meanwhile, the department has budgeted $500,000 to conduct a pilot program to test gunshot detectors, which are sensors connected to police camera. When the sensors detect the sound of gunshots, they direct officers to their origin.

The technology has already been deployed in cities, such as Oakland, Calif., and Milwaukee. NYPD already tested the detectors in Brooklyn in 2011, but the program never expanded.

Authorities believe the gunshot detection system could be tied in with cameras, including drones, to give officers a visual image of a shooter.

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