Fla. Senate Panel Votes To Ban Spying With Drones

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) — A Florida Senate panel says police should be banned from using drones to spy on citizens.

A bill (SB 92) that would prohibit law enforcement agencies from gathering evidence or other information flew through the Criminal Justice Committee with a unanimous vote Tuesday.

It also would ban government agencies from using drones for code enforcement.

Sen. Joe Negron, a Stuart Republican who sponsored the bill, first agreed to some changes that made it more acceptable to police chiefs and sheriffs.

The panel amended the bill to make exceptions to the ban for search warrants signed by judges and for certain emergencies such as fires and hostage situations.

The bill also includes an exception for terrorism-related searches.

Negron said the measure would balance the need for security with privacy rights.

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