We seem to hear about gun violence more and more these days. From the Sandy Hook school shooting in 2012 to the Florida nightclub incident last summer, the headlines are full of these types of stories.
But did you know that in some communities, only 25% of gunshots are reported to 911? Now, some police departments across the U.S. are using technology to find out when any gunfire occurs.
How police are detecting gunfire
What we’re talking about is the ShotSpotter gunfire detection system. Police were alerted by this technology to a shooting rampage in downtown Fresno, California, earlier this week.
Three people were killed in what police are calling a racially motivated shooting spree. ShotSpotter uses a network of sensors to detect when shots are fired. Fresno police were immediately notified by the system when the incident began.
Fresno Police Chief Jerry Dyer said, “A total of 16 rounds were fired, according to our gunshot detection system, and all of those occurred in approximately a minute to a minute-and-a-half. As a result, what we know is that three people were shot and killed and one person [was] shot at in less than a two-minute timeframe.”
Dryer also said more people may have been killed during the shooting spree if police weren’t alerted immediately by ShotSpotter. Watch this video for a quick overview of how the system works:
The ShotSpotter system is able to let police know where shots were fired, how many shots were fired, and the number and types of weapons used. It’s amazing technology that can really help law enforcement.