Considerations for Domestic Law Enforcement Implementation of a UAS Program in the Proposed FAA Regulatory Environment of Integration into the National Airspace System
NAVAL POSTGRADUATE SCHOOL MONTEREY CA MONTEREY United States
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This thesis identifies the potential future mission profile of an unmanned aircraft systems UAS program within a domestic law enforcement agency after implementation of UAS regulations, a task currently in progress by the Federal Aviation Administration FAA. First, the author reviews current academic literature and provides analysis on key policy issues of safety, the transfer of risk, and constitutional rights. Then, the author consults the knowledge and experience of individuals responsible for the integration architecture of UAS through an IRB-approved online survey. The survey of these subject matter experts using the Delphi method resulted in the following recommendations early public engagement and transparency for intended UAS use by law enforcement a policy framework that addresses safe operation and privacy further investment in sense and avoid technology the development of a comprehensive UAS training program. This academically rigorous consultation provides law enforcement executives and elected officials the policy implications of initiating a new UAS program and the groundwork to assess existing UAS programs.