Corrections officers in South Carolina are now using drones to monitor inmates. It’s believed to be the first program of its kind in the country.
The drones are used as 24-hour surveillance, allowing operators to monitor a variety of actions.
South Carolina Department of Corrections Director Bryan Stirling hired drone operators with military drone experience to fly missions day and night inside of the prison grounds.
“You are seeing us use technology to survey our prisons from the sky we are going to show up if people are coming into our prisons up to no good there’s a great potential that we are going to see them,” Stirling said.
He’s even using confiscated drones to help officers on the ground to spot trouble.
“One of the drones out there we actually confiscated so we are not only fighting fire with fire we are using their instruments also,” he said.
The drones are part of a much larger surveillance program. A new ‘nerve center’ allows officials to conduct 24/7 surveillance operations with cameras around the prison.
Prison officials say technology plays a key role in keeping prisons safe, but there is still a need for more corrections officers.