Drones and the Judge

To view this article, checkout Best of the Spingola Files, Vol. II: Here’s Looking at You coming to Amazon.com in December 2012.


Steve Spingola is an author and retired Milwaukee Police Department homicide detective. His new book, Best of the Spingola Files, Volume I, is now available at Amazon.com.

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© Steven Spingola, Wales, WI, 2012

8 Responses

  1. Misery

    Killer thread Steve. People died in our revolutionary war to stop crap like this. Wake up America!

    June 8, 2012 at 11:16 am

  2. Ally

    Mr. Spingola, thanks for speaking out on this. I try to explain police surveillance to my friends, Then they ssk if i am paranoid and need medication, They think they have nothing to hide. The ranchers in Nebraska thought so to until the. EPA used drones to spy on them.

    June 9, 2012 at 2:19 am

  3. John V.

    This big brother garbage is really freighting. Please keep on holding the neo-con Repubs and the Orwellan Dems accountable for selling out the Constitution. Come and visit UWM Steve. Might get the Libertarian students group to host a visit. Edcate the people supporting the parties of big government and gigatic government so we can reclaim our country, Like the judge said the founding fathers are rolling over in their graves.

    June 9, 2012 at 3:53 pm

  4. Eddie

    Love the comment by Mark Newell. Never let him talk you into dumpster diving for pizza.

    June 9, 2012 at 8:58 pm

  5. Rick S.

    My man Charles Krauthammer minced no words about drones on Fox’s All Star panel.


    So you’re in good company, Spin!

    June 9, 2012 at 9:16 pm

  6. Pete in Plainview

    Working in IT I know that LE wants nano drones ASAP. These small devices can hover and look into a seond or third story window. This is a fact not something being tossed out there by some nut case. The federal government now permits local law enforcement to use dtones weighing 25 pounds or less without any permisson of the FAA. Should drones be used how will anyone ever find out?

    June 10, 2012 at 4:33 pm

  7. Steve Spingola


    If drones are used to monitor Americans, we will likely never know unless an arrest is made or a search warrant is issued citing the use of a drone to obtain the probable cause needed to search or arrest. Right now, fusion centers across the country obtain and use very personal data about citizens–family incomes, assets, electronic purchases, credit card transactions, cellular telephone movements, etc.–and the individuals’ whose data was obtained are not notified.

    That was the case with Daniel David Rigmaiden. FBI agents used a device called a “stingray” to obain his location based on the use of Rigmaiden’s cellular tower location. A “stingray” is a device that mimics a cell tower. Agents in van costing taxpayers about $500,000 each troll the area where they believe the individual they want to locate is operating. The “stingray” then picks up any info coming to nearby cell towers–absent a cellular company’s consent–and pinpoints a target’s GPS coordinates. The government intially said this was not a seach, but have since changed their position and now argue that a search was conducted, but Rigmaiden has no legal standing to contest the search because the tower is owned by a private company. Of course, without the device Rigmaiden paid for, the data from the tower would not exist.

    In Rigmaiden, the agents included the info from the stingray to satisify the probable cause requirement to arrest. As such, a court is pressing the U.S. attorney’s office in Arizona to provide Rigmaiden’s defense council with discovery on how this device actually works. The FBI, of course, is freaking out, as they do not want any info from these big brother devices work leaking to the public domain. If the public were to discover just how vast and expansive the new American surveillance state has become, there, of course, is bound to be political ramifications.

    June 10, 2012 at 4:51 pm

  8. Pingback: Spingola Files » Source: Milwaukee Police in the Midst of Procuring and Using Drones

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