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Idaho Legislature Introduces Bill Limiting Drone Use

flickr.com, Mike Miley

BOISE, Idaho (AP) — A bill that would establish clear legal guidelines for when Idaho law enforcement agencies could use drones or unmanned aircraft to gather evidence in criminal cases has cleared its first legislative hurdle. The Senate Transportation Committee introduced legislation Thursday that would require police to establish probable cause or obtain a warrant before using drones in an investigation.

Republican Sen. Chuck Winder of Eagle is the sponsor and a former military pilot. Winder says drones are an intriguing technology with a range of potential uses. But he says it’s essential to make sure those uses don’t infringe on constitutional protections. The committee also agreed to hear more debate on a measure to get Idaho into the mix for one of six future drone test sites operated by the Federal Aviation Administration.

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