BREAKING NEWS Confirmed coronavirus cases in the world reach 20 million Full Story
SEVERE WX : Fire Weather Watch View Alerts

Bethel church donates $25K to fund Redding police drones

The Redding city council voted to accept a $25,000 donation from Bethel Church to help the police department fund an unmanned aerial vehicle(UAV) program.

Posted: Dec 20, 2017 7:13 PM

The Redding city council voted to accept a $25,000 donation from Bethel Church to help the police department fund an unmanned aerial vehicle(UAV) program.

That money would be used to buy several UAV's, or drones as they're most commonly known, as well as train officers on the equipment.

Like many other police departments its size, Redding doesn't have it's own helicopters.

So it relies on the assistance of CHP's northern aerial division, which covers 13 counties throughout the North State, for air support.

“So their air operations can get called out for any of those counties,” Redding Police sergeant Chris Smyrnos said. “We're just very fortunate that we have them based here in Redding up at Benton so we get to use them quite a bit because that's where they're based at. But if they're out of the area in Trinity County or Siskiyou County then they're unavailable to us.”

That's why the Redding is looking into UAV's as a tool to help them in their investigations.

“Having that aerial perspective can make a big difference as far as comprehending or understanding especially more complicated collision or crime scenes,” Smyrnos said.

The program would cost $25,000 to launch and $2,000 a year to maintain, which will come out of the city’s general fund.

“At this point we're looking at two Phantom 4 packages and then one Mavic package,” Smyrnos said. “And the package includes the actual UAV in addition to spare batteries, carrying cases, extra propellers and consumable parts. The iPads for viewing the live video footage and so forth.”

Earlier this year, the city council voted to accept a $500,000 donation from the church to help fund the Neighborhood Police Unit which was met with some concern from citizens.

The same concern surrounded this donation and several people voiced their opinion at Tuesday’s city council meeting.

Smyrnos hopes the UAV's will help improve public and officer safety.

He says they provide a valuable tool in search and rescue operations, narcotics investigations and swat operations, but never to conduct random surveillance activities.

“They're only to help us again get an aerial perspective when our incident commanders and supervisors feel it would help to enhance the safety of the officers and and the public,” Smyrnos said.

The program is expected to be operational late spring or early summer 2018.

California Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 559746

Reported Deaths: 10377
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Los Angeles2085634977
Riverside40452799
Orange39641726
San Bernardino35712546
San Diego32330593
Kern23583171
Fresno17290171
Alameda13213208
San Joaquin12303211
Santa Clara11687204
Sacramento10795161
Tulare10475196
Imperial9693244
Stanislaus9665162
Contra Costa9182139
Ventura814689
San Francisco754867
Santa Barbara670469
San Mateo6110120
Marin532779
Monterey529335
Merced501264
Kings445356
Solano402940
Sonoma355647
Madera230239
Placer218620
San Luis Obispo209315
Yolo172143
Santa Cruz12386
Butte10958
Napa104610
Sutter9427
El Dorado7291
San Benito7154
Lassen6380
Yuba6004
Mendocino43110
Shasta41810
Colusa3624
Glenn3603
Nevada3221
Humboldt2824
Tehama2761
Lake2202
Amador1642
Mono1541
Tuolumne1522
Calaveras1471
Del Norte990
Siskiyou930
Inyo893
Mariposa612
Plumas340
Modoc50
Trinity50
Sierra30
Alpine20
Unassigned00
Chico
Clear
86° wxIcon
Hi: 101° Lo: 67°
Feels Like: 86°
Oroville
Clear
80° wxIcon
Hi: 101° Lo: 68°
Feels Like: 81°
Paradise
Clear
86° wxIcon
Hi: 94° Lo: 68°
Feels Like: 86°
Chester
Clear
63° wxIcon
Hi: 88° Lo: 60°
Feels Like: 63°
Red Bluff
Clear
85° wxIcon
Hi: 107° Lo: 70°
Feels Like: 85°
Willows
Clear
86° wxIcon
Hi: 106° Lo: 64°
Feels Like: 86°
Monday was almost as hot as Sunday for most of northern California as a ridge of high pressure controlled our weather. A cooling trend is coming, but it will only cool to seasonable levels in the short term.
KHSL Severe
KHSL Radar
KHSL Temperatures

Community Events