We’ve all seen the lines of police at protests donning head to toe armor, batons and/or launchers at the ready, glowering down at protesters through face shields. But how much does all that gear cost? According to the early returns on riot gear budgeting requests we have been filing, quite a lot.
About a month ago we uncovered Oakland Police’s new cell site simulator agreement with the Alameda County District Attorney’s Office, which gives them access to the powerful HailStorm, an updated version of the Harris Corporation’s infamous StingRay. In those documents we saw that Fremont Police Department was also going to take up Alameda County on their offer to use the device, so we filed a request - they got back to us last week with their own records, and it appears they have completed the necessary steps to begin using the device.
Protestors opposed to the Alameda County Sheriff’s plan to obtain unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) held a press conference at Oakland City Hall on Thursday, Oct. 18 in coordination with the ACLU of Northern California and the Electronic Frontier Foundation. MuckRock had previously obtained documents related to Alameda’s proposed drone program.
On the morning of the April 2, 2012 shooting at Oikos University that killed seven people, Oakland police also faced managing protesters during a federal raid on six cannabis dispensary sites.