|Submitted||May 29, 2015|
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To Whom It May Concern:
Pursuant to the Massachusetts Public Records Law, M.G.L. c.66, §10, I hereby request the following records:
Please provide a comprehensive, all-inclusive inventory of all Non-Lethal and Less-Than-Lethal Directed-Energy Weapons currently in use on the streets of Massachusetts/on state residents by the Massachusetts State Police or/and by Joint Task Force personnel of any kind including any unit of the Military, through either classified or unclassified programs, through either Operational or Testing/Training programs, and authorized for use either locally or via State or Federal authorities.
I also request that, if appropriate, fees be waived as we believe this request is in the public interest, as suggested but not stipulated by the recommendations of the Massachusetts Supervisor of Public Records. The requested documents will be made available to the general public free of charge as part of the public information service at MuckRock.com, processed by a representative of the news media/press and is made in the process of news gathering and not for commercial usage.
I expect the request to be filled in an accessible format, including for screen readers, which provide text-to-speech for persons unable to read print. Files that are not accessible to screen readers include, for example, .pdf image files as well as physical documents.
In the event that fees cannot be waived, I would be grateful if you would inform me of the total charges in advance of fulfilling my request. I would prefer the request filled electronically, by e-mail attachment if available or CD-ROM if not.
Thank you in advance for your anticipated cooperation in this matter. I look forward to receiving your response to this request within 10 calendar days, as the statute requires.
Attached you will find the Department’s response to your recent records request. You will only be receiving the attached via email. Your attention to this matter is appreciated. Thank you.
Massachusetts State Police Legal Section
470 Worcester Road
Framingham, MA 01702
An interim response, stating the request is being processed.
To Whom It May Concern:
I wanted to follow up on the following Freedom of Information request, copied below, and originally submitted on May 29, 2015. Please let me know when I can expect to receive a response, or if further clarification is needed.
Thank you for your help.
The Supervisor of Public Records
Secretary of the Commonwealth
I am writing to appeal the rejection of/and request the reconsideration of my recent 5/29/2015 public records request to the Massachusetts State Police for "a comprehensive, all-inclusive inventory of all Non-Lethal and Less-Than-Lethal Directed-Energy Weapons currently in use on the streets of Massachusetts/on state residents by the Massachusetts State Police or/and by Joint Task Force personnel of any kind including any unit of the Military, through either classified or unclassified programs, through either Operational or Testing/Training programs, and authorized for use either locally or via State or Federal authorities. "
The immediate, 5/29/2015 response from Massachusetts State Police stated: "The Department, in its reasonable judgment, believes that providing you with the requested information would undermine public safety as it relates to the Department’s security measures and emergency preparedness. As such, the disclosure of information responsive to this request may prove detrimental to the Department's law enforcement and public safety efforts. See also Supervisor of Public Record Opinion SPR14/554, Upholding Department’s withholding of weapons inventory)."
Exemption from public disclosure was cited as relevant to "Massachusetts General Laws, Chapter 4, §7, cl. 26 (n).
Exemption (n) protects:
records including, but not limited to, blue prints, plans,
policies, procedures and schematic drawings, which relate
to internal layout and structural elements, security measures, emergency preparedness, threat or vulnerability assessments, or any other records relating to the security
or safety of persons, buildings, structures, facilities,
utilities, transportation or other infrastructure located
within the commonwealth, the disclosure of which, in the
reasonable judgment of the custodian, subject to review by
the supervisor of public records under subsection (b) of
section 10 of chapter 66, is likely to jeopardize public
1. I would like to point out that my request in no way asks for "blue prints, plans, policies, procedures and schematic drawings, which relate to internal layout and structural elements, security measures, emergency preparedness, threat or vulnerability assessments, or any other records relating to the security or safety of persons, buildings, structures, facilities, utilities, transportation or other infrastructure located within the commonwealth. " In no way does my request undermine or seek to undermine public safety, security, or emergency preparedness by seeking divulgence of architectural or infrastructural or logistical information of any kind.
2. I am unable to locate the referenced "Supervisor of Public Record Opinion SPR14/554, Upholding Department’s withholding of weapons inventory" in the public domain and would appreciate further information, if this is relevant.
3. I am in fact making this request very much in the public interest, and as a matter of public safety. It is a matter of public knowledge that the Department of Justice and the Department of Defense have engaged in, and continue to engage in joint development for joint use of non-lethal and less-than-lethal weapons via Memoranda of Understanding and various internal policies as well as public acknowledgements, as in the President's Recent 21st-Century Policing Report. It is however not a matter of public knowledge what exactly the non-lethal and less-than-lethal weapons are that are currently in use by State and Local Police departments.
4. Given that Law Enforcement is here to protect citizens and our common living space here in Massachusetts, it follows that every citizen and every resident of Massachusetts needs have an awareness and clear understanding of how exactly this protection is being ascertained, and what technologies and weapons exactly are being deployed in the establishment of this protection and public safety.
5. Many non-lethal weapons and less-than-lethal weapons, by their very nature, fall into a special classification, because they are remote radiation weapons, electrical weapons, and electronic weapons whose silent and invisible radiation/electromagnetic/ultrasonic discharge cannot be visibly or audibly witnessed in public, but can only be perceived, sensed, and impacted on the body, brain, central nervous system, muscles, and organs of the person on whom the weapon is used. As such, these are Covert weapons, and therefore it is doubly in the interests of public safety that all members of the public be fully informed as to what particular Covert weapons the State Police has currently in its arsenal, and is deploying currently, within the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.
To specify, the kind of non-lethal and less-than-lethal weapons being referred to here include those discussed in this brochure from the Department of Defense: http://www.defenseinnovationmarketplace.mil/resources/JointNon-lethal_weapons_Tech.pdf
These "non-lethal" technologies include: Through-Wall Radar/Infra-Red Surveillance,
Ocular Interruption Weapons, Dazzling Lasers, Active High Powered Microwave Weapons, Active Denial Technologies, Remote Neural Monitoring Weapons, Remote EEG-Reading Weapons, Remote Electro Muscular Incapacitation Weapons, Remote Neural Stimulation Weapons, Remote Organ Stimulation Weapons, Remote Brain State Alteration Weapons, Remote Nervous System Manipulation Weapons, and others.
Other extant "non-lethal" technologies and weapons that have been developed include those deploying the mechanisms related in these patents, among others, knowledge of which patents is publicly available and can be found online:
USP # 6,488,617 (December 3, 2002)
Method and Device for Producing a Desired Brain State
Abstract --- A method and device for the production of a desired brain state in an individual contain means for monitoring and analyzing the brain state while a set of one or more magnets produce fields that alter this state.
USP # 6,487,531 (November 26, 2002)
Signal Injection Coupling into the Human Vocal Tract...
Abstract --- A means and method are provided for enhancing or replacing the natural excitation of the human vocal tract by artificial excitation means, wherein the artificially created acoustics present additional spectral, temporal, or phase data useful for (1) enhancing the machine recognition robustness of audible speech or (2) enabling more robust machine-recognition of relatively inaudible mouthed or whispered speech.
USP # 6,426,919 (July 30, 2002)
Portable and Hand-Held Device for Making Humanly Audible Sounds...
Abstract --- A portable and hand-held device for making humanly audible sounds responsive to the detecting of ultrasonic sounds.
USP # 6,239,705 (May 29,2001)
Intra-Oral Electronic Tracking Device
Abstract --- An improved stealthy, non-surgical, biocompatable electronic tracking device is provided in which a housing is placed intraorally. The housing contains microcircuitry. The microcircuitry comprises a receiver, a passive mode to active mode activator, a signal decoder for determining positional fix, a transmitter, an antenna, and a power supply. Optionally, an amplifier may be utilized to boost signal strength. The power supply energizes the receiver. Upon receiving a coded activating signal, the positional fix signal decoder is energized, determining a positional fix. The transmitter subsequently transmits through the antenna a position locating signal to be received by a remote locator.
USP # 6,167,304 (December 26, 2000)
Pulse Variability in Electric Field Manipulation of Nervous Systems
Abstract --- Apparatus and method for manipulating the nervous system of a subject by applying to the skin a pulsing external electric field which, although too weak to cause classical nerve stimulation, modulates the normal spontaneous spiking patterns of certain kinds of afferent nerves.
USP # 6,091,994 (July 18, 2000)
Pulsative Manipulation of Nervous Systems
Abstract --- Method and apparatus for manipulating the nervous system by imparting subliminal pulsative cooling to the subject's skin at a frequency that is suitable for the excitation of a sensory resonance.
USP # 6,081,744 (June 27, 2000)
Electric Fringe Field Generator for Manipulating Nervous Systems
Abstract --- Apparatus and method for manipulating the nervous system of a subject through afferent nerves, modulated by externally applied weak fluctuating electric fields, tuned to certain frequencies such as to excite a resonance in neural circuits. Depending on the frequency chosen, excitation of such resonances causes in a human subject relaxation, sleepiness, sexual excitement, or the slowing of certain cortical processes.
USP # 6,052,336 (April 18, 2000)
Apparatus and Method of Broadcasting Audible Sound Using Ultrasonic Sound as a Carrier
Lowrey, Austin, III
Abstract --- An ultrasonic sound source broadcasts an ultrasonic signal which is amplitude and/or frequency modulated with an information input signal originating from an information input source. If the signals are amplitude modulated, a square root function of the information input signal is produced prior to modulation. The modulated signal, which may be amplified, is then broadcast via a projector unit, whereupon an individual or group of individuals located in the broadcast region detect the audible sound.
USP # 6,017,302 (January 25, 2000)
Subliminal Acoustic Manipulation of Nervous Systems
Abstract --- In human subjects, sensory resonances can be excited by subliminal atmospheric acoustic pulses that are tuned to the resonance frequency. The 1/2 Hz sensory resonance affects the autonomic nervous system and may cause relaxation, drowsiness, or sexual excitement, depending on the precise acoustic frequency near 1/2 Hz used. The effects of the 2.5 Hz resonance include slowing of certain cortical processes, sleepiness, and disorientation. For these effects to occur, the acoustic intensity must lie in a certain deeply subliminal range. Suitable apparatus consists of a portable battery-powered source of weak subaudio acoustic radiation. The method and apparatus can be used by the general public as an aid to relaxation, sleep, or sexual arousal, and clinically for the control and perhaps treatment of insomnia, tremors, epileptic seizures, and anxiety disorders. There is further application as a nonlethal weapon that can be used in law enforcement standoff situations, for causing drowsiness and disorientation in targeted subjects. It is then preferable to use venting acoustic monopoles in the form of a device that inhales and exhales air with subaudio frequency.
USP # 6,011,991 (January 4, 2000)
Communication System & Method Including Brain Wave Analysis...
Abstract --- A system and method for enabling human beings to communicate by way of their monitored brain activity. The brain activity of an individual is monitored and transmitted to a remote location (e.g. by satellite). At the remote location, the monitored brain activity is compared with pre-recorded normalized brain activity curves, waveforms, or patterns to determine if a match or substantial match is found. If such a match is found, then the computer at the remote location determines that the individual was attempting to communicate the word, phrase, or thought corresponding to the matched stored normalized signal.
Method & Apparatus for Remotely Determining Information as to Person's Emotional State ~
Stirbl, et al.
Abstract --- In a method for remotely determining information relating to a person's emotional state, an waveform energy having a predetermined frequency and a predetermined intensity is generated and wirelessly transmitted towards a remotely located subject. Waveform energy emitted from the subject is detected and automatically analyzed to derive information relating to the individual's emotional state. Physiological or physical parameters of blood pressure, pulse rate, pupil size, respiration rate and perspiration level are measured and compared with reference values to provide information utilizable in evaluating interviewee's responses or possibly criminal intent in security sensitive areas.
USP # 5,356,368 (October 18, 1994)
Method & Apparatus for Inducing Desired States of Consciousness
Monroe, Robert E.
Abstract --- Improved methods and apparatus for entraining human brain patterns, employing frequency following response (FFR) techniques, facilitate attainment of desired states of consciousness.
USP # 5,330,414 (July 19, 1994)
Brain Wave Inducing Apparatus
Abstract --- A random signal generator outputs a random noise signal to a band pass filter which selectively passes frequency components in the frequency range of a desired brain wave from a subject.
USP # 5,289,438 (February 22, 1994)
Method & System for Altering Consciousness
Abstract --- A system for altering the states of human consciousness involves the simultaneous application of multiple stimuli, preferable sounds, having differing frequencies and wave forms.
USP # 5,135,468 (August 4, 1992)
Method & Apparatus of Varying the Brain State of a Person by Means of an Audio Signal
Meissner, Juergen P.
Abstract --- A method of varying the brain state of a person includes the steps of supplying the first audio signal to one ear of the person, supplying a second audio signal to the other ear of the person, and substantially continuously varying the frequency of at least one of the first and second audio signals to vary the brain state of the person.
USP # 5,047,994 (September 10, 1991)
Supersonic Bone Conduction Hearing Aid and Method
Lenhardt, Martin, et al.
Abstract --- A supersonic bone conduction hearing aid that receives conventional audiometric frequencies and converts them to supersonic frequencies for connection to the human sensory system by vibration bone conduction.
USP # 4,958,638 (September 25, 1990)
Non-Contact Vital Signs Monitor
Sharpe, Steven, et al.
Abstract --- An apparatus for measuring simultaneous physiological parameters such as heart rate and respiration without physically connecting electrodes or other sensors to the body. A beam of frequency modulated continuous wave radio frequency energy is directed towards the body of a subject. The reflected signal contains phase information representing the movement of the surface of the body, from which respiration and heartbeat information can be obtained.
USP # 4,877,027 (October 31, 1989)
Brunkan, Wayne B.
Abstract --- Sound is induced in the head of a person by radiating the head with microwaves in the range of 100 megahertz to 10,000 megahertz that are modulated with a particular waveform. The waveform consists of frewuency modulated bursts. each burst is made up of 10 to 20 uniformly spaced pulses grouped tightly together. the burst width is between 500 nanoseconds and 100 microseconds.
USP # 4,834,701 (May 30, 1989)
Apparatus for Inducing Frequency Reduction in Brain Wave
Abstract --- Frequency reduction in human brain wave is inducible by allowing human brain to perceive 4-16 hertz beat sound. Such beat sound can be easily produced with an apparatus, comprising at least one sound source generating a set of low-frequency signals different each other in frequency by 4-16 hertz. Electroencephalographic study revealed that the beat sound is effective to reduce beta-rhythm into alpha-rhythm, as well as to retain alpha-rhythm.
USP # 4,573,449 (March 4, 1986)
Method for Stimulating the Falling Asleep and/or Relaxing Behavior of a Person
Warnke, Egon F.
Abstract --- A method and apparatus is provided with which a person suffering from sleeplessness can be more easily relaxed and may more rapidly fall asleep. In particular, sound pulses are emitted by an electro-acoustic transducer, according to the cadence of which, the person seeking to fall asleep is induced to breathe in and out over a predetermined period of time.
USP # 3,951,134 (April 20, 1976)
Apparatus & Method for Remotely Monitoring & Altering Brain Waves
Malech, Robert G.
Abstract --- Apparatus for and method of sensing brain waves at a position remote from a subject whereby electromagnetic signals of different frequencies are simultaneously transmitted to the brain of the subject in which the signals interfere with one another to yield a waveform which is modulated by the subject's brain waves. The interference waveform which is representative of the brain wave activity is re-transmitted by the brain to a receiver where it is demodulated and amplified. The demodulated waveform is then displayed for visual viewing and routed to a computer for further processing and analysis. The demodulated waveform also can be used to produce a compensating signal which is transmitted back to the brain to effect a desired change in electrical activity therein.
USP # 3,884,218 (May 20, 1975)
Method of Inducing & Maintaining Various Stages of Sleep in the Human Being
Monroe, Robert A.
Abstract --- A method of inducing sleep in a human being wherein an audio signal is generated comprising a familiar pleasing repetitive sound modulated by an EEG sleep pattern.
USP # 3,837,331 (September 24, 1974)
System & Method for Controlling the Nervous System of a Living Organism
Abstract --- A novel method for controlling the nervous system of a living organism for therapeutic and research purposes, among other applications, and an electronic system utilized in, and enabling the practice of the invented method.
6. It is a matter of grave public concern that the public be fully aware of what kind of non-lethal weapons, among those listed above, are currently in the possession of or are currently being used or being planned to be used by State Law Enforcement. Many of the patents listed and weapons referenced in Department of Defense publications, including in the brochure linked above, pose problems related to privacy, civil liberties, and human rights. In this light, it is very much in the public interest to keep the public informed and aware as to the specific State inventory of non-lethal and less-than-lethal technologies.
7. The non-lethal weapons referenced here are often telecommunications and electronic communications devices. Section 43A of Massachusetts Law makes reference to criminal harassment by acts conducted by use of telecommunication and electronic communication devices:
Section 43A. (a) Whoever willfully and maliciously engages in a knowing pattern of conduct or series of acts over a period of time directed at a specific person, which seriously alarms that person and would cause a reasonable person to suffer substantial emotional distress, shall be guilty of the crime of criminal harassment and shall be punished by imprisonment in a house of correction for not more than 21/2 years or by a fine of not more than $1,000, or by both such fine and imprisonment. The conduct or acts described in this paragraph shall include, but not be limited to, conduct or acts conducted by mail or by use of a telephonic or telecommunication device or electronic communication device including, but not limited to, any device that transfers signs, signals, writing, images, sounds, data or intelligence of any nature transmitted in whole or in part by a wire, radio, electromagnetic, photo-electronic or photo-optical system, including, but not limited to, electronic mail, internet communications, instant messages or facsimile communications.
(b) Whoever, after having been convicted of the crime of criminal harassment, commits a second or subsequent such crime, or whoever commits the crime of criminal harassment having previously been convicted of a violation of section 43, shall be punished by imprisonment in a house of correction for not more than two and one-half years or by imprisonment in the state prison for not more than ten years.
8. Section 1 of Senate Bill No.1252, presented by Eileen M Donoghue 1/16/2015, also includes reference to electrical weapons designed to incapacitate, injure, or kill, and includes allusion to their possession by Law Enforcement: 8. “electrical weapon”, a portable device or weapon from which an electrical current, impulse, wave or beam may be directed, which current, impulse, wave or beam is designed to incapacitate temporarily, injure or kill, including, but not limited to, a taser or stun
This bill petition also references Law Enforcement possession of such electrical weapons: "Nothing in this section shall prohibit possession of the above weapons by (i) a federal, state or municipal law enforcement officer, or member of a special reaction team in a state prison or designated special operations or tactical team in a county correctional facility, acting in the discharge of his or her official duties who has completed a training course approved by the secretary of public safety in the use of such a device or weapon; (ii) military personnel who possess such weapons in question as part of their official duties; or (iii) an authorized supplier of such devices or weapons if possession of the device or weapon is necessary to the supply or sale of the device or weapon within the scope of a legitimate sale or supply enterprise. "
9. The Fourth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States makes reference to the public's right to privacy from any kind of "search and seizure":
The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.
10. If non-lethal weapons are being used covertly--as they can indeed be, very easily, as described above--either by individuals or by members of State or Local Police within the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, for whatever purpose, whether it be "surveillance", "concealed electronic monitoring," "radiation surveillance," "radiation intelligence," "signals intelligence," or any other, their use inevitably must be subject to Massachusetts and US laws, and should be a matter of public knowledge. Persons being surreptitiously "surveilled," "monitored," "interrogated," "treated," or in any way assaulted covertly by these weapons, whether by Law Enforcement or Intelligence agencies or Defense or contracted personnel, or by any Joint Task Force, or/and with the collusion of communities and neighborhoods, should in every way be fully informed of whatever charges are being used against them to permit such Covert action, in the interests of their rights to privacy and due process.
For all these reasons, to inform the public openly and transparently, to build bridges between communities and Law Enforcement, to ensure that Law Enforcement, just like every member of the public, is not above the Law, and to guarantee public safety through open disclosure and public information, I ask respectfully that my initial request for open publication of the Inventory of Non-Lethal Weapons and Less-than-Lethal Weapons being held and being deployed by Massachusetts State Police be filled.
Thank you for your attention.
A letter stating that the request appeal has been received and is being processed.
A letter stating that the request appeal has been rejected.