Video of the EPD Drone First Responder team in action

The Easley Police Department was recently able to assist a neighboring agency with mutual aid, providing one of their advanced drone systems and a skilled pilot.

After a vehicle pursuit of a stolen vehicle that persisted for many miles and ended with the occupants bailing out and fleeing on foot, law enforcement deployed many assets, including K9s, to bring the assailants to justice. If you watch this quick segment, you will see the EPD drone system records simultaneously in both thermal imaging and color video.

These two videos were married so you can see the difference in what is visible – even in daylight – with a standard vision camera and thermal – from the air. You will see the anomaly, thermal/heat target, in the center of the field. It’s the suspect lying in the field. Easily found with the thermal drone sensor, but not so much with the regular camera.

The pilot, EPD’s Officer Runser, was able to quickly guide other ground units to the suspect where they were taken into custody without incident.

“Why do we assist other agencies outside of Easley? Well, it’s simple,” EPD said in their post on Facebook. “Crime doesn’t have boundaries and most criminals cross the jurisdictional lines constantly. We are all dealing with the same people. If we can help another agency bring them safely to justice, outside of Easley – that makes our city safer, and we hope that will keep them out of Easley for good.”