Leave a comment

Sheriff secretly buys $97,000 worth of drones against public wishes

Sheriff secretly buys $97,000 worth of drones against public wishes
photo courtesy of shutterstock

I really gotta hand it to kids, when they really want something they will stop at nothing to get it. That can mean playing mom against dad, or just flat out ignoring what their parents said.

I can understand a 5-year-old snatching cookies from the cookie jar after they were told no cookies. What I can't understand is how a civil servant, a sheriff, who is employed by the public, can just blatantly ignore the public's wishes and do whatever he wants.

The case in point is that after a large meeting in 2013 where the public was staunchly opposed to the sheriff's department acquiring drones in Alameda County, California, Sheriff Ahern decided to buy drones anyway.

And he used - "stole" is a better word, since it's taxpayer funds - $97,000 to buy the drones anyways. That huge chunk of money that could go to plenty of other much-needed services that purchased only two drones.

But this isn't even the most shocking thing about the sheriff getting the drone.

Did I mention that this isn't the first time that Sheriff Ahern has pulled this sort of stunt? "Sheriff Ahern seems to think he hasn’t done anything wrong, since he told the Contra Costa Times: "'There's nothing secret about what we've done...This is how our department acquires equipment on a regular basis."'"

Seriously?

In addition to the sheriff lying to the public and stealing public funds to do so, there's another problem. The laws that the sheriff had proposed to govern the use of the now-obtained drones have loopholes big enough to drive a Mack truck through.

These loopholes easily allow for the misuse of the drones and direct violation of citizen privacy. The department also doesn't require a warrant for the use of the drones.

Now the real question is what will the sheriff be using these drones for? And how will the use of these be governed, if at all?

Next Story
View Comments ()
Kidnapped boy escapes through clever use of Facebook
Previous Happening Now

Kidnapped boy escapes through clever use of Facebook

AURORAGOLD: The NSA's plan to hack any - or every - cell network
Next Happening Now

AURORAGOLD: The NSA's plan to hack any - or every - cell network