It might be creepy, but it was perfectly legal when some guys flew a drone outside a woman's Seattle apartment window this weekend, prompting a call to police.

The Seattle Police Department reports the woman got worried after spotting the Unmanned Aerial Vehicle outside her apartment window near Terry Ave. and Stewart St. early Sunday morning.

The woman was concerned the drone was looking into her apartment and called and reported the incident to her building concierge, who immediately called police.

The concierge went outside the building and spotted two men piloting the drone. The men were also carrying a tripod and video camera. Soon after, they packed up their gear and drove away.

Seattle Police officer Patrick Michaud says the drone flyers were not breaking any laws because it is legal to take photographs and video from any public place, and the FAA has not issued specific rules for recreational drone flying.

A federal judge ruled earlier this year the remote-controlled aircraft are legal because the FAA has not issued any rules governing model aircraft photography.

The FAA is working with law enforcement to further clarify rules for unmanned aircraft systems, the agency said in a news release Monday.



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  • Great link Tim, really explains it all.

    But CNN shows only this on the front page :(


  • No facts at all. Classic bs media. And of course the implication is they drove off before the police arrived aka they are guilty. 

  • Interesting 2 minute 60 minutes piece about this incident https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bBiLDujVFZw

  • Well I guess Skyris can kiss their business goodbye now.  They made the news, doing responsible, safe, harmless aerial photography.  So the FAA will be sending them a cease and desist notice and fine tomorrow.

  • There is absolutely nothing creepy about drones whatsoever.
    What IS creepy however are those select few individuals in our communities who see a drone and are immediately able to convince themselves that (a) the person flying it is some sort of predator who is (b) engaged in an activity of a perverted nature and that (c) they are somehow the subject of interest and that (d) they need to take action by taking matters into their own hands.
    As we have seen recently, some take matters into their own hands by issuing threats, verbal abuse and even physical assault. Thankfully sanity prevailed in this instance and the lady's compulsion to act lead her to contact authorities, resulting in a peaceful outcome for all parties.
  • This morning, Fox "News" reported that the drone was actually being operated by Skyris Imaging, who were doing a job of taking photographs to show sightlines for a new apartment building. 

  • Well It is a little different than the neighbor across the street looking in your general direction from a balcony.  This would be more like the neighbor across the street setting up a telescope and pointing it in your bathroom window.  There is no law against this kind of behavior. However it is still creepy, rude, and asking for trouble.  Frankly, if you are using your "model aircraft" to stare through your neighbor's window, you deserve whatever you get for it.  The cops may not be able to arrest you.  But when your aircraft gets knocked out of the sky and you get your ass kicked, boo hoo.

  • How is this news?

    Would she call cops if the person on the balcony across the street was looking in her general direction with binoculars? And if she did, would it be news?

  • If you don't like it close your blinds. It is no different than a neighbor looking in your window.

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