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Government surveillance going too far?

6:30 PM, Jan 16, 2013   |    comments
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Tallahassee, Florida - A state senator thinks government surveillance is going too far so he wants to curtail the use of police drones.
 
Sen. Joe Negron says he wants to limit how far police can go to spy on people so he's filed legislation that would ban unmanned aircraft with certain exceptions.
 
Police could use drones to investigate possible terror attacks, prevent imminent danger to people or property, or if they got a search warrant.
 
Negron says it's OK to kill terrorists in Afghanistan and Pakistan with drones, but he believes they should not be used routinely to monitor law-abiding Floridians.
 
"As we have these emerging technologies, they can do some good things but they can also be harmful to our American values and I think the bill just makes sure that we don't want to have drones hovering in the sky watching out for what Floridians are doing when they're following the law."

Negron says he wants to set reasonable boundaries on the use of drones.

"As a general rule, law-abiding Floridians should have a reasonable expectation that the government is not monitoring their movements and that as long as they're following the law, they shouldn't have to worry about Big Brother in the sky keeping track of them."

Law enforcement agencies oppose the bill. Miami police have been testing drones for several years.

The bill has passed its first committee at the Capitol, but must get through several more committees before it can go to the Senate floor for debate next spring

Dave Heller

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