Video Surveillance - FOIA Documents
Pursuant to a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request filed by EPIC, the U.S. Park Police released logs of when and where the surveillance camera installed on their helicopter was used. These logs show that the main purpose of the camera is to conduct surveillance of public protests. Recordings (or "downlinks") from the camera were transmitted to law enforcement agencies, including one instance in which the surveillance feed from a pro-life demonstration was sent to the FBI.
EPIC is following up with the FBI and the District's police department to bring light to how surveillance images and processed and used. The remote surveillance of public demonstrators raises important First Amendment issues. The logs also underscore the need for public vigilance and oversight to make sure that new tools of surveillance do not abuse our civil liberties. See EPIC's Video Surveillance page for more information.
List of available images (in JPG format):
4/22/02, National Mall. Anti-globalization, Pro-Palestine protests: Videodownlink surveillance of demonstrators.
4/20/02, Connecticut and Florida Avenues NW. Anti-globalization, Pro-Palestine protests: Downlink Video of demonstration activity.
1/22/02, 14th St. and Constitution Avenue NW. Pro-life demonstration: Pro-Life Demo downlink to FBI.
1/22/01, 14th St. and Constitution Avenue NW. Pro-life demonstration: MPD downlink of prolife demonstration to Supreme Court.
1/18/01, New Hampshire and Georgia Avenues NW. Search for demonstration activity, provided downlink photos of coffins, demonstartors [sic].
10/16/00, National Mall. Million Family March: overflight and downlink of areas for Million Family March.