Here in the idyllic heartland, one of the common crimes is burgling and vandalizing isolated old farmsteads. The optimistic thugs are usually looking for antiques and other fencible merchandise (copper is always popular), and they often get away with it, earning, I judge, an hourly income about half of what they could make flipping legal if disheartening burgers.
A couple of years ago drones became the new toy of choice for our local gendarmes. (If you smell some hefty federal grant money here, I forbear arguing with you.) They would make crook-catching a snap.
Down around Emmetsburg (nee "The Irish Settlement") it didn't work yesterday.
The crime was eyeballed by a citizen who called the cops who descended with enough men and materiel to set up a perimeter around the corn field into which the miscreants had fled. This all happened at mid-morning. Aside from the manpower, the lawn order lads deployed a small manned airplane and two drones.
We can assume a good time was had by all in the air and on the joysticks. Hour piled upon hour as they buzzed back and forth over the fading green of high September maize. It isn't too hard to imagine that the suspects watched the aerial crime-buster craft for while, shrugged, then settled down for nice long naps. A little before supper time they snuck out and tried to make their getaway through an adjacent field of soy beans where they were spotted by a citizen innocent of possessing a drone, a thermal imager, or even one of those old-fashioned Cessnas. He phoned the cops and the lead panned out. The county jail population rose by two at sundown.
My personal belief is that the law officers are spending this equinox day preparing new grant proposals to increase their drone force.
The Luddite who lives in one of the sub-basements of my soul finds all this pretty damned funny.