A week ago, on a Friday afternoon, a reporter called us with news that the Seattle Police Department (SPD) had received permission from the Federal Aviation Administration to employ two unmanned aerial drones it had purchased.
The news came not from city officials, but via the fruits of a public records request by our friends at the Electronic Frontier Foundation.
City officials declined to comment. Did the ACLU have anything to say? You bet.
ACLU of Washington executive director Kathleen Taylor called for the mayor and city council to develop clear and transparent policies to safeguard privacy and free speech rights, declaring, “We need to have a public dialogue about the use of police drones over Seattle’s skies.”