LLPD Harnessing the Power of Drones for Community Safety

In a move to enhance community safety and increase the efficiency of their operations, the Los Lunas Department (LLPD) in New has recently implemented a cutting-edge drone program along with the reintroduction of their bicycle patrol program. This new technology, including a high-end drone and state-of-the-art electric bicycles, is providing invaluable tools for the officers to better serve the community, reports New Bulletin.

LLPD Chief Frank Lucero expressed his gratitude for the new additions, stating, “These tools help to supplement our officers' abilities to better serve our community, and we are thankful to have them available.”

The department acquired their first drone in October 2023 as a proof of concept, which quickly proved to be an invaluable asset. LLPD Police Chief Lucero affirmed the drone's extensive usage on numerous occasions, showcasing its practicality and effectiveness.

DJI drones for testing purposes

Officer Shawn Vigil, the head of the new drone program, emphasized the immense value of drones in law enforcement and the cost-effectiveness they bring. The department acquired a DJI drone for testing, which boasts impressive features such as shooting 4k video at 30 frames per second, night vision capabilities using thermal imaging, and weatherproof design, enabling operation even in harsh conditions. Vigil highlighted one of the primary advantages of drones: providing an alternative to manned aviation, specifically helicopters, which can be costly and unavailable due to other agencies' commitments.

The deployed drone has proved to be a valuable asset for various missions, including operations and crash reconstructions. Utilizing the drone's aerial perspective, Vigil stressed its efficiency in gathering accurate depictions of crash sites, especially when victims are injured. The tactical applications are vast, as the drone provides crucial situational awareness, aiding law enforcement in assessing potential threats safely.

While LLPD is the first law enforcement agency in the county to utilize drones extensively, Officer Vigil predicts broader adoption of such programs throughout the state as administrations recognize their usefulness. He emphasized the department's commitment to public transparency, encouraging anyone with questions to reach out to him through the department for clarification.

Chief Lucero praised the drone program's contributions to other areas of law enforcement, such as assisting with DWI checkpoints and stop sign enforcement. Furthermore, drones have played a vital role in their recruitment efforts. Recognizing the potential of this technology, Lucero plans to acquire more drones to ensure their availability on every shift, further enhancing the department's capabilities.

Chief Lucero underlined the department's commitment to staying at the forefront of technology, recognizing its ability to enhance efficiency and safety.

He stated, “Technology can give us the upper hand by increasing our efficiency and safety. Ultimately, allowing LLPD to provide the best services we can to our community, which is our ultimate goal.”

The implementation of the drone program and the revival of the bike patrol initiative demonstrate LLPD's dedication to utilizing innovative solutions to protect and serve the Los Lunas community. As they continue to adopt and adapt to new technologies, they are setting a new standard for law enforcement agencies across the state.

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Haye Kesteloo
Haye Kesteloo

Haye Kesteloo is the Editor in Chief and Founder of DroneXL.co, where he covers all drone-related news, DJI rumors and writes drone reviews, and EVXL.co, for all news related to electric vehicles. He is also a co-host of the PiXL Drone Show on YouTube and other podcast platforms. Haye can be reached at haye @ dronexl.co or @hayekesteloo.

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