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Originally published Thursday, February 7, 2013 at 3:54 PM

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Seattle mayor ends police drone efforts

The mayor of Seattle is ending the police department's drone program after local residents protested.

Associated Press

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SEATTLE —

The mayor of Seattle is ending the police department's drone program after local residents protested.

Mayor Mike McGinn announced Thursday the Seattle police department will not use two small drones it obtained through a federal grant. McGinn says the unmanned aerial vehicles will be returned to the vendor.

The police department had said drones will be used to provide an overhead view of large crime scenes, serious accidents, disasters and search and rescue operations. The department had said drones won't be used for random surveillance and won't carry weapons.

A city council meeting Wednesday had drawn strong criticism of the program by members of the community. The city council was considering an ordinance giving police the authority to use them.

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