skip navigation


Abstract Database

Register for Latest Research

Stay Informed
Register with NCJRS to receive NCJRS's biweekly e-newsletter JUSTINFO and additional periodic emails from NCJRS and the NCJRS federal sponsors that highlight the latest research published or sponsored by the Office of Justice Programs.

NCJRS Abstract

To download this abstract, check the box next to the NCJ number then click the "Back To Search Results" link. Then, click the "Download" button on the Search Results page. Also see the Obtain Documents page for direction on how to access resources online, via mail, through interlibrary loans, or in a local library.


NCJ Number: 250590 Find in a Library
Title: Law Enforcement Guidance Concerning Suspected Unauthorized UAS Operations: White Paper
Date Published: July 2016
Page Count: 9
Sponsoring Agency: National Institute of Justice (NIJ)
Washington, DC 20531
Contract Number: 2014-IJ-CX-K001
Sale Source: National Institute of Justice (NIJ)
US Department of Justice
Office of Justice Programs
810 Seventh Street NW
Washington, DC 20531
United States of America
Document: PDF
Type: Issue Overview; Legislation/Policy Analysis; Report (Grant Sponsored); Report (Technical Assistance)
Format: Document; Document (Online)
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This White Paper by the Justice Technology Information Center provides guidance to law enforcement agencies on how to assess the operations of unmanned aircraft systems (UAS), more commonly known as drones, within their jurisdictions; and it suggests actions to interdict and mitigate unauthorized, illegal, or risky operations.
Abstract: The typical consumer UAS is operated by a hand-held digital radio control box, but technology is advancing, so that many of these technologies can be operated with a simple cell phone. Most UAS systems have a range up to a few miles. Some of the risks of UAS systems are physical injury from crashes, the transporting of illegal substances, clandestine photography that violates privacy, the photographing of sensitive structures, the monitoring of law enforcement officers’ movements, and the delivery of harmful agents. Effective August 2016, the FAA has promulgated new 14 CFR Part 107 regulations specific to civil commercial operations of small UAS weighing less than 55 pounds. The FAA regulations permit small UAS to operate during daylight in confined operating areas within visual line of sight of a “remote“ pilot/observer. An overview is provided of possible State laws that may assist law enforcement in addressing unauthorized or unlawful UAS operations. Some existing laws that may apply are disorderly conduct laws, “peeping Tom” laws, nuisance/noise laws, and identity theft and invasion of privacy. Reckless endangerment and criminal trespass may also apply in some circumstances. Issues in the investigation of such cases are also discussed.
Main Term(s): Technology transfer
Index Term(s): Federal Aviation Administration (FAA); Municipal ordinances; NIJ grant-related documents; NIJ Resources; State laws; Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS)
To cite this abstract, use the following link:

*A link to the full-text document is provided whenever possible. For documents not available online, a link to the publisher's website is provided. Tell us how you use the NCJRS Library and Abstracts Database - send us your feedback.