The use of satellite imagery for domestic law enforcement
Schillinger, Raymond M.
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From an event management standpoint, and in concert with digital mapping applications, satellite imagery has proven its utility to support first responders and emergency services in a wide range of both natural and manmade disasters. Imagery data has also supplemented police activities in developing operational plans that can be prepared for short time, high risk responses at either public facilities or events. This policy options analysis draws a side-by-side comparison of three approaches for the law enforcement community to readily acquire satellite imagery. One approach will make added use of the Civil Applications Committee, the second approach will explore the reactivation of the National Applications Office, and the third will investigate making greater use of commercially available sources. All three approaches have clear advantages and disadvantages, some more than others. In the final analysis, the best policy option presented was making greater use of commercial providers. The relative ease to collect material and manage it with fewer obstacles, in comparison to the Civil Applications Committee and National Applications Office alternative, made it the better option.