- Associated Press - Monday, June 6, 2016

FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) - The Fairbanks Police Department could be adding a drone to its crime-fighting toolbox soon.

The City Council on Monday will decide whether to approve a resolution that would accept almost $32,000 from a U.S. Department of Justice-sponsored grant, The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reported (https://bit.ly/1TWd6NC).

Fairbanks Police Chief Randall Aragon said the Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grant is based on crime rates and does not require matching funds.

About $7,000 from the grant would go to the unmanned aerial system, which Aragon said is a “very high tech” quad-copter a few feet in diameter. He said the drone would be used in criminal searches or search and rescue efforts.

The grant would also provide $1,500 for a crisis negotiator telephone system, $6,000 for a long-range acoustic device, $5,000 for body-worn cameras and about $12,000 for a cloud-based evidence-discovery system.

According to the council resolution, police estimate annual software maintenance of $8,000 for the drone and evidence-discovery system.

The grant money would get the department six body cameras, increasing the department’s supply to 36.

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Information from: Fairbanks (Alaska) Daily News-Miner, https://www.newsminer.com

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