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Memphis Police Department to use new high-tech tool to fight gun crimes

ShotSpotter instantly notifies officers of gunshot crimes in progress, enabling them to mobilize strategically with real-time data.

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — NEWS RELEASE FROM MEMPHIS POLICE DEPARTMENT:

The Memphis Police Department Deploys ShotSpotter To Combat Gun Violence

Gunshot Detection Technology Provides Real-Time Alerts to Law Enforcement to Ensure Fast and Accurate Response

Memphis, TN. – April 1, 2021 –The Memphis Police Department announces that it is implementing ShotSpotter technology across 3 square miles in the Orange Mound area to help combat the increasing problem of gun violence. ShotSpotter is the leader in solutions that help law enforcement officials identify, locate and deter gun violence.

The real-time alerts notify police precisely when and where gun incidents occur, resulting in a faster, more accurate response to the scene to better recover evidence, interview witnesses, and attend to gunshot victims. The overall goal is to reduce gun violence and improve the safety of the community. 

"Reducing violent crime in Memphis is our No. 1 goal. Deploying ShotSpotter technology is another tool that we can use to reduce gun violence and improve public safety," said Director Michael Rallings.

The Memphis Police Department is committed to the reduction of illegal gun use. The mission is to protect the quality of life in our community by creating an environment of enhanced public safety and security.

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The ShotSpotter technology uses a series of small audio sensors deployed high up on top of light posts and buildings. When a gunshot occurs, the sensors work instantly to triangulate the sound and pinpoint the number of shots fired and the location. Trained ShotSpotter acoustic experts are on duty 24/7 to review and qualify all gunfire incidents and alert local law enforcement immediately − all within a minute and usually within 30 seconds.

ShotSpotter helps police departments transform their practices from reactive to proactive by eliminating the reliance on delayed and vastly underreported 911 calls. This is a major problem for most cities because research shows fewer than 20 percent of gunshots are called in to 911.  ShotSpotter instantly notifies officers of gunshot crimes in progress, enabling them to mobilize strategically with real-time data delivered directly to dispatch centers, patrol cars and even smartphones. The gunfire data also enables law enforcement agencies to improve evidence collection, prosecution and overall police effectiveness.