Macomb County Sheriff's Office to use drones for 'law enforcement missions'

Posted at 3:49 PM, Jul 20, 2018
and last updated 2018-07-20 17:45:32-04

The Macomb County Sheriff’s Office has added an unmanned aerial unit.

They’re using drones to help with certain law enforcement missions and incidents.

Sheriff Anthony Wickersham said, “They are cost-effective, again lightweight, transportable, they can be carried in a vehicle and can be deployed in a relatively short period of time.”

Eighteen months ago, one of the deputies approached Sheriff Wickersham about using drones.

Getting a birds eye’s view can help law enforcement officials with various tasks.

From trying to find a missing person to documenting car crashes, anything that could help them get a better perspective to determine the next move.

“If we do have a barricaded gunman or hostage-type situation, our SWAT team will be able to get some aerial footage of what’s going on in and around that location.”

They have four drones that will be deployed at various substations throughout the county and they’ll be training 14 deputies so it can be used any time.

He explained, “Each one of these deputies has to go through a training course of eight hours and have to take an FAA test.”

The cost of the four drones was more than $26,000, paid for using forfeiture funds.

The sheriff says this is just another way they’re incorporating new technology.

“Always got to be thinking three, four, five years where are we going, what’s out there.”