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Criminal Justice Update

BCI drones available to photograph schools


The Ohio Attorney General’s Bureau of Criminal Investigation (BCI) is offering to use drones to take aerial photographs of schools for inclusion in school safety plans.

Local law enforcement, in coordination with school administrators, can request that BCI agents take free photos of schools in their area. The photos will be made available for upload to the school’s safety plan, which law enforcement can access through the Ohio Law Enforcement Gateway (OHLEG). 

Ohio law requires that each school in Ohio have a school safety plan on file for law enforcement to aid authorities in responding to an emergency. 

“Although the Attorney General’s Office does not have oversight or authority over Ohio schools, I have always believed that it is important to use the resources of this office in any way we can to help Ohio’s kids,” said Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine. 

“When law enforcement responds to a school emergency, they must have as much information about the school as possible,” he said. “Right now, school safety plans must include floor plans, but I believe that aerial photos will be an effective tool to help law enforcement plan for and respond to a violent incident.”

BCI has six drones that are used primarily to document crime scenes and assist in missing person cases.

Local law enforcement, in conjunction with schools, can request drone photos by calling 855-BCI-OHIO (224-6446).