ShotSpotter technology helps Detroit police respond to gunfire faster
DETROIT (FOX 2) – Detroit Police are responding faster than ever to gun violence in the city. This is all thanks to new technology that allows officers to trace shots from the moment they are fired.
“The problem with the shots fired in a big city like Detroit, most people don’t call the police when shots are fired,” said Cmdr. Darrell Patterson.
This is where ShotSpotter technology comes in. It was flown to the Ninth Ward in Detroit a few years ago and was extended in March to the 8th Ward where Darrell Patterson is the commanding officer.
“He can tell you if it’s in the front yard, or in the back yard if someone is pulling from a vehicle, which direction they were shooting,” he said.
He says ShotSpotter consists of multiple rounds in an area that can detect gunfire, even up to the caliber used.
Receiver – sends an alert like this sample from another city to the SpotShotter phone app. It gives officers a bird’s eye view of where the shots are coming from – based on images from Google Earth, not in real time.
“Whenever a ShotSpotter race comes out, they can react instantly, they can respond on their own,” Patterson said.
Six officers are assigned to a ShotSpotter unit in the 8th, they patrol ShotSpotter areas and can be there in 1 to 2 minutes – using the app.
“Most of the time we are able to grab people right at the scene,” Patterson said, “after they shoot.”
From March 25 to June 27 in District 8, ShotSpotter led to 11 arrests – 33 guns were recovered and 131 incidents where officers collected casings for evidence.
Patterson says they are relying more on this technology and that there are discussions about expanding the ShotSpotter program.
“Oh yeah, we’re watching and we’re going to catch you,” he said.
There is another technology that DPD uses to compare and identify sockets.