High-tech military detection gear delivered to aid in Alabama hostage surveillance
Jimmy Lee Dykes
February 4th, 2013
06:40 PM ET

High-tech military detection gear delivered to aid in Alabama hostage surveillance

By Barbara Starr

Defense Secretary Leon Panetta approved a request from the FBI for high-tech military detection equipment to assist in surveillance on the underground bunker in Alabama where a 5-year-old boy was held hostage, CNN has learned.

The hostage situation ended Monday when FBI agents entered the bunker and freed the boy. The 65-year-old hostage-taker is dead, law enforcement officials on the scene said.

The military detection equipment was delivered on site, according to a military official, but it could not immediately be determined if the equipment was used before or during the rescue.

Three Defense Department officials tell CNN that the equipment requested was similar to the technology used in war zones to detect buried explosives. Some small number of troops would have been needed to operate the equipment on-site.

“Panetta personally approved it” said one senior Defense official, emphasizing the military was prepared to offer whatever it could to assist in rescuing the child. That official emphasized the involvement of the military was strictly limited to offering technical assistance and gear not readily available to civilian law enforcement.

U.S. military personnel would have played “no role” in the assault, the official said, as U.S. troops are not permitted to undertake civilian law enforcement action.

soundoff (11 Responses)
  1. The real steve

    Troll. The article clearly states that the military was not involved in the "assault" not the "operation." The assault being the actually clearing of the bunker, killing the target, recovery of the captured boy. The article was about the military using specialized equipment (some sort of ground penetrating radar?) to aid law enforcement in better doing their jobs. Unbelievable that people would actually gripe about the aid provided when the end result was positive. Get a life people.

    February 5, 2013 at 11:11 am | Reply
    • Mark

      I agree buddy, these guys are obviously just people who like to complain about anything and everything. Stick their kid down there and they'd be asking for U.S. Army to break into that bunker and save their kid. Way to use this forum to stir your anti-gov conspiracies Steve.

      February 6, 2013 at 9:45 am | Reply
  2. Yes to intervention

    Yes, I support state sanctioned murder of crazies kidnappers with bunkers.

    February 5, 2013 at 1:30 am | Reply
  3. Steve

    How could this article say the military played "no role" in this operation? They were the ones operating the equipment! used to guide the entry team! What hypocrisy.

    February 4, 2013 at 10:33 pm | Reply
  4. Steve

    Does that mean we are going to see more military intervention in stateside police affairs? This strikes me as a dangerous new precedent. The government seemed to have used a very emotional event to justify military intervention.

    February 4, 2013 at 10:31 pm | Reply
    • Joseph McCarthy

      Well put, Steve.

      February 5, 2013 at 12:36 pm | Reply
    • Mark

      The military played no role smart guy. Read the article, they gave equipment to the FBI. Equipment. It's like going to a tech company and getting the equipment except the equipment is ready and available in the DOD stockpile. I wonder if you were down there in the bunker, would you care where the equipment came from? If you say Yes you are a liar.

      February 6, 2013 at 9:41 am | Reply
  5. patriot

    Govt Breaks Posse Comitatus Law


    February 4, 2013 at 8:46 pm | Reply

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