- Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker
- United States of America
By 2017, it is estimated that law enforcement will have deployed over 30,000 drones in the United States. Some, like those used by the U.S. Border Patrol and US. Department of Homeland Security, are rather large, while others, often referred to as nano-drones, are designed to look and fly like hummingbirds or small insects.
Regardless of their size, the vast majority of drones are equipped with high resolution cameras and infrared sensors capable of seeing through the walls of private residences. Moreover, case law currently provides law enforcement with a Fourth Amendment curtilage exemption for surveillance conducted from the air. In other words, as the law in Wisconsin currently stands, police could lawfully fly a hummingbird nano-drone over a homeowner's private, fenced-in backyard to photograph and document activity on private property absent judicial oversight.
A recent video highlights the scope-and-depth of a new drone surveillance system called ARGUS, which enables a single drone to capture and store ALL movements of vehicles and persons within a 15-miles radius. These images are digitally stored for up to 10 years.
In the latest session of the Wisconsin legislature, not a single elected representative has acted to protect the public from unreasonable drone surveillance. Instead, law enforcement officials have simply asked the public to trust the police with this new technology absent transparency and/or civilian oversight.
In order to address the threat Unmanned Ariel Vehicles (UAVs, drones) pose to the civil liberties of the residents of Wisconsin, we, the undersigned, ask Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker to issue executive actions regulating the use of UAVs in accordance with the guidelines proposed by the Rutherford Institute, which prohibit the use of drone surveillance absent a court order or exigent circumstances.
The Restrict Wisconsin Drone Surveillance petition to Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker was written by Steve Spingola and is in the category Civil Rights at GoPetition.