Sheriff requests assistance for purchasing a drone

The Brown County Sheriff’s Office is requesting assistance from the public for purchasing a drone for the Sheriff’s office.

Last week, two boys were lost in a cornfield near Fairview. With the aid of a drone, they could have been located in a more timely manner. With high temperatures and humidity, dehydration could have set in within a short amount of time. With the help from a local farmer, great information obtained from my dispatcher who stayed on the phone with the boys – keeping them calm and obtaining location info, and my undersheriff, a situation was resolved without a bad outcome. However, if the boys wouldn’t have had a cell phone, the outcome could have been catastrophic.

Missing persons, runaways, dementia walk-aways, disoriented accident victims and lost children would be perfect examples of why a drone is needed. Time is of the essence and we could have used a drone in many situations throughout the years to render aid to the public. The unfortunate part is that my budget just doesn’t allow for such a purchase.

The cost of this drone would be $32,000.

The model of drone we are looking at purchasing has been used extensively in Jackson County for several years and they are very well satisfied with the features the drone has to offer. Many law enforcement agencies across the country use this very same drone and are very well satisfied. These drones are specifically manufactured for Law Enforcement use. There is a camera with thermal imaging that can detect body heat, as well as a light system that can be utilized at night. Flight time is approximately an hour with two interchangeable batteries, which are changed out individually so there is no loss of power to the drone. Staff will be fully trained and licensed in order to operate the drone.

I have had many residents ask me throughout the years how they could help the Sheriff’s office, and now is the time I really need your help. Through your generous donations, we could have the ability to purchase this vital piece of equipment. My attorneys have assured me that any donation is tax deductible and we will have receipts for tax purposes for anyone wishing to donate.

I am asking that anyone who would like to help purchase this much needed piece of equipment, call me at the Sheriff’s office at 785-742-7125, or drop off personally or mail to the Sheriff’s office at 709 Utah Street in Hiawatha, KS 66434.

I have always appreciated the support I have received from the citizens of Brown County and with this piece of equipment, it will enhance our ability to serve you better.

John Merchant21 Posts

John Merchant currently serves as Brown County (Kansas) Sheriff.

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