The Goodyear City Council unanimously approved a grant that allows the police department to acquire an additional drone.
On Nov. 18, Goodyear Police Department Deputy Chief Santiago Rodriguez requested approval of a grant-in-aid agreement with the Tohono O’odham Nation for $31,000 to acquire a drone.
Rodriguez said drones expand details of an area to better assist the police in searches or if they must access an area that could be dangerous.
“How we use our current drones right now is through area searches. We look for missing persons,” Rodriguez said. “We use it in different aspects of high-risk situations where we might need to get a look at things without sending our officers into danger.”
In addition, the drones can also be used as evidence and to pick up additional information at crime scenes, Rodriquez said.
“Sometimes you pick things up from looking down that you wouldn’t get from the natural point of view,” Rodriguez said.
“We also use it for site security. To have plans for schools and things of that nature for us to have those things readily available if we have to respond to something.”
The council supported Rodriquez’s presentation and agreed that additional drones could be useful for the safety of the citizens.
Councilwoman Sheri Lauritano said, “I think it’s a great program. Thank you for going out and getting that money because I think it will be very helpful. We always hear about lost people, especially during springtime.”
The Council unanimously approved the motion.
Mayor Georgia Lord added, “I never thought we’d seen a drone. Ever. It’s amazing, especially for the police department and the way you’re using it. It’s just safety for our citizens.”