The NYPD has acquired 14 unmanned aircraft systems and plans to deploy the new drones across the city during emergencies.
The NYPD’s Technical Assistance and Response Unit will be utilizing the drones to assist in rescue missions, inaccessible crime scenes and hostage situations.
"Drone technology will give our cops and their incident commanders an opportunity to see what they're getting into before they go into harm's way," NYPD Chief of Department Terence Monahan said Tuesday. "This can now get us a lot closer into areas that a helicopter wouldn't be able to get into.”
Activist groups, including the Council of American Islamic Relations (CAIR) oppose the deployment of the NYPD drones over civil liberties concerns, the New York Daily News reports.
NYPD officials said repeatedly Tuesday that the drones will not carry weapons, be put on routine patrol or spy on potential suspects.