‘Eye in the sky’: New Smyrna Beach police weighing idea of using drones

City will hold city meeting at 6 p.m. on Jan. 27

NEW SMYRNA BEACH, Fla. – City officials with New Smyrna Beach will ask the public for their thoughts if the police department should use drones.

The public discussion will be held at a city meeting at 6 p.m. on Jan. 27.

The police department has proposed deploying drones in support of public safety, according to city officials.

Police said drones would help them in searching for a missing person, documenting crime scenes and performing rescue operations after a natural disaster.

The meeting will be held in the City Hall Commission Chambers.

“Any surveillance or search with a drone is prohibited under Florida Statute 934.50 without a warrant signed by a judge. Our proposed policy specifically states ‘No random surveillance will be conducted with unmanned aircraft, pursuant to Florida Statutes.’"

Daytona Beach Police already use drones.

A drone helped officers catch a burglary suspect who was jumping from rooftop to rooftop on Aug. 1.

DBP told News 6 in 2018 the department used $76,000 seized from drug dealers to buy five drones.

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