Phillips County and “The Case of The Mysterious Drones”
By Korinne Condie
Phillips County Dispatch Deployment
Just over a month ago, at the beginning of December, we finished deploying a new Kaseware system at four agencies in Phillips County, Colorado. The deployment was a success, and since we took the first call and went live, they have been using Kaseware to dispatch officers, write up reports, handle their records management and book offenders with their new booking module.
I’ve been in close contact, as using a brand new system always comes with its share of questions. With four agencies, it’s four times the questions and scenarios to explore. We’ve gone over everything from how to create new system configurations to how to pull statistics on number of calls responded to over the last month.
Mysterious Drone Sightings
These are always the typical questions that I have with all my clients. Typical, that is, until about three weeks ago. I called the undersheriff back to respond to a question he’d asked, and in the middle of our conversation, he quickly had to run to respond to another one of “the drone issues” they had been having. He explained that over the last week, they had been dealing with tons of reports of mysterious drones flying over his county.
I had to admit, it was the first I heard of it. So I logged into their Kaseware system, and did a quick search for Calls for Service about drones. And in the course of just one week, they had 13 calls logged by citizens reporting drone activity. Calls like:
- “Report of drones over South Wynona Avenue. Upon response to the area, saw what appeared to be a plane and three flashing lights in the sky that went west that may have been drones.”
- “Victim reports drone flew low over her house causing her family fear and concern for personal injury.”
- “Saw a large drone flying about 40 feet from ground come from the west and went to the East towards the Baptist Church. About five feet in size with red and blue lights. Possibly landed in field in the area of the church.”
- “Reporting Party states she has a drone at her house.”
- “Drones reported hovering low just east of the Cobblestone Inn.”
Kaseware allows mapping of search results, and just around Holyoke alone, the map showed numerous calls for service in just a week’s span — allowing them to track the calls and also try to establish if there is a pattern (see graphic below).
Kaseware in Action
Currently, the Phillips County residents are reporting it, and the four agencies are responding, but the biggest question is “Who is operating this mysterious pack of drones late at night in Colorado and why?”
National Media Coverage
News agencies all over the state, and beyond, are reporting the sightings, conjecturing on what they could be, and interviewing officials in the county. Sources from all over the country — everywhere from newspapers, blog, Instagram and Twitter are reporting the story. Here is just a small sampling of news coverage this issue has received.
- The Denver Post: “Mysterious drones flying nighttime patterns over northeast Colorado leave local law enforcement stumped.”
- NPR: “FAA Investigates Drones Circling Parts Of Colorado, Nebraska.”
- Good Morning America: “New drone task force investigating mysterious sightings across Colorado, Nebraska.”
- CNN: “Drones flying in rural Colorado and Nebraska have residents freaking out. No one knows who’s behind them.”
This tiny county in Colorado — population 4,292 — has and continues to generate national media attention! Conspiracy theories abound and it has been a hot topic for the last few weeks. Eventually the truth will all come out and we’ll have the answers to the mystery. But in the meantime, our Phillips County brethren will continue to log the calls for service into Kaseware, map the results, and see if they can help uncover the riddle of the Northern Colorado drones. We look forward to more updates on this strange and mysterious case!
Korinne Condie is the Director of Customer Success at Kaseware. She is a former government contractor with extensive experience in system engineering, operations and customer success within both government and corporate organizations.
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