Aug 092016
 August 9, 2016  Surveillance, U.S.

Kristen V. Brown reports:

When the FBI sent secret spy planes to capture surveillance footage of the Baltimore protests of Freddie Gray’s death in 2015, the agency justified the aerial monitoring as necessary. “Large scale demonstrations and protests” meant there was “potential for large scale violence and riots,” the agency wrote in an internal memo at the time.

Last week, the FBI released more than 18 hours of this footage in response to a FOIA request from the American Civil Liberties Union. Captured by a thermal-imaging system with infrared cameras mounted to the plane’s wing, the footage was taken over five days during at least 10 surveillance flights. The footage shows major Black Lives Matter marches, quiet neighborhood gatherings and near-empty streets. It’s unclear if law enforcement acted on this footage in policing the protests.

Read more on Fusion.

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