BRUNSWICK COUNTY, NC
(WECT) – If the sheriff of Brunswick County has his way, flying robots may
become part of the department's equipment.
Sheriff John Ingram is
pushing lawmakers for the use of drones.
In a letter to the North
Carolina General Assembly Legislative Research Committee, Ingram said he
supports the use of unmanned aircrafts -- commonly known as drones.
Ingram believes they could help in search and
rescue operations, hostage situations, and other emergencies, including patrol of
In his letter, Ingram said his agency
currently uses a helicopter to gain access to areas of the county that are
difficult to reach, such as swamp land and wooded areas.
But, he said using that helicopter
has limitations, including time and expenses.
Ingram said he expects to use drones in the
same way as helicopters but the drones would deploy faster and be less
"I look at this as potential being able
to save more lives in the future than with what we do now," said Ingram. "It's
enhancing our capabilities and when we do that, it makes our response better
and more effective."
One of the major concerns about this type of
new technology is the potential to invade people's privacy.
Ingram was clear to point out that if this
plan is approved, there will be rules and regulations in place that balance
privacy interests and law enforcement needs.
Ingram also said that the sheriff's office
would need approval from the state and county government before moving forward
with any type of acquisition of a drone apparatus.