ND bill restricts cops’ use of drones to less lethal force

The state passed a law that allows police to use drones equipped with non-lethal devices such as TASERs

By PoliceOne Staff

FARGO, N.D. — Police in North Dakota are legally allowed to use drones equipped with non-lethal devices, according to a report from WDAY.

The bill, which originally banned both lethal and non-lethal devices outfitted on drones, was amended after a push by the North Dakota Peace Officers Association.

House Bill 1328 explicitly states that drones are restricted to non-lethal force like tear gas and a TASER. It also restricts evidence-gathering techniques to make sure privacy laws are respected.

“What I wanted was there to be a very clear line on how our liberties can be protected with the new advances in technology,” Rep. Rick Becker told the publication.

Warrants are now needed for surveillance by drones, with exceptions for border patrol, emergencies and training exercises.

Rep. Becker told WDAY he expects the bill will be submitted again in 2017 to restrict non-lethal force on drones as well.

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