After secret air surveillance of Compton, mayor wants protections


Angel Jennings, Richard Winton and James Rainey
L.A. Times
April 24, 2014

After learning this week of a nine-day aerial surveillance program conducted in 2012, Compton Mayor Aja Brown proposed a policy that would require authorities to notify the public before installing monitoring equipment.

“There is nothing worse than believing you are being observed by a third party unnecessarily,” Compton Mayor Aja Brown said Wednesday. “We want to assure the peace of mind of our citizens.”

The proposal for the so-called “citizen privacy protection policy” came amid public outrage among Compton residents who were never notified of the pilot surveillance program and said it amounted to an invasion of privacy. For nine days in early 2012, a small Cessna plane recorded low-resolution images of every corner of the 10.1-square-mile city and beamed them to the local Sheriff’s Department station, where deputies observed incidents including fender benders, a string of necklace snatchings and a shooting.

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