All violence or just “gun violence”?

As Daniel from work said in the email, “back to bows and arrows” and I would like to add knives and clubs:

A new technology called ShotSpotter enables law enforcement officials to precisely and instantaneously locate shooters, and it has been quietly rolling out across America. From Long Island, N.Y., to San Francisco, Calif., more than 60 cities in the U.S. have been leveraging ShotSpotter to make their streets safer.

ShotSpotter relies on wide-area acoustic surveillance and GPS technology to triangulate the source of gunshots. Sensors are fixed to buildings and poles to provide coverage over a fixed area. With audio-analysis software, it can identify whether a shooter is stationary or moving — meaning police officers can be equipped with information on the speed and direction of, say, a vehicle from which a shot was fired.

It can also “hear” the acoustic signature and distinguish between calibers and types of firearms. Similarly, it can hear different explosions and classify them, from vehicle backfires to fireworks to bombs.

The ShotSpotter Gunfire Alert system then relays the location and data to the police or a dispatch computer within moments, enabling a more rapid response time for both police and first responders.

The best part: ShotSpotter works. It’s accurate to 10 to 15 feet, and some police departments are reporting accuracy to within five feet. In Long Island’s Nassau County, gun violence was reduced by a whopping 90 percent at the close of this year’s first quarter.

It would be interested to see if the total violence and not just “gun violence” was reduced. I’m immediately suspect when careful wording such as that in the last paragraph is used.

15 thoughts on “All violence or just “gun violence”?

  1. I’m sorry if I don’t find it comforting that the police have found a way to get the process of drawing lines around the bodies started sooner. Using Nassau County, which lies in the People’s Republic of New York, as an example doesn’t make it any more heartening either…where law abiding citizens have been turned into victims in waiting by legislative fiat. I suspect that not only careful wording was used, it’s likely there’s a reason why the first quarter of this year was the only quarter cited.

    As an interesting side note, the Nassau County website has page dedicated to their anti-violence efforts which refers to an organization called CARGO ( Communities Addressing Responsible Gun Ownership) which is something of an enigma. They seem to be incorporated out of Florida but there is NO website, contact, or other information readily available. While the statements made about them seem innocuous, it looks as if they aren’t doing anything that the NRA’s Eddie Eagle programs don’t already cover…could it be an anti-gun initiative in disguise? Were I not soon to engage in pie eating and other holiday delights I’d check it out…

  2. Your post left me a bit confused – how exactly does the Shot Spotter stop a firearm from being discharged? Because that seems the only way gun violence would be reduced by its use, unless the authors meant that Shot Spotter allows faster identification of firearms use and thus a quicker police response, which is a different thing altogether. /sarc

  3. Shotspotter is a great tool, particularly when it’s combined with video cameras and license/facial recognition software. Anonymous bullets are a problem for most police departments. With this system, you can match the bullets to the source. If that scares you, then you should stop doing anything illegal.

    There’s a video somewhere that shows the system in action with a drive-by shooting. The first shot was fired, the cameras came on and caught all the action. Since it’s real time, the police would have known the make/model/color of the car in seconds. It’s a fine crime-fighting tool.

    Is it kind of “Big Brother”-ish? Yeah. But technology keeps advancing. I wouldn’t be surprised if they eventually started implanting chips in all of us because the constitution doesn’t say that they can’t.

  4. Shotspotter is a great tool, particularly when it’s combined with video cameras and license/facial recognition software. Anonymous bullets are a problem for most police departments. With this system, you can match the bullets to the source. If that scares you, then you should stop doing anything illegal.

    There’s a video somewhere that shows the system in action with a drive-by shooting. The first shot was fired, the cameras came on and caught all the action. Since it’s real time, the police would have known the make/model/color of the car in seconds. It’s a fine crime-fighting tool.

    Is it kind of “Big Brother”-ish? Yeah. But technology keeps advancing. I wouldn’t be surprised if they eventually started implanting chips in all of us because the constitution doesn’t say that they can’t.

  5. Shotspotter is great for statist tools who like to rob citizens at gunpoint to pay for their own boondoggles. Those that support “tools” like Shotspotter are no less criminals than those they inaccurately purport will be stopped by such folly.

    Implanted chips certainly would run afoul of the Fourth Amendment, but since the government has already stopped recognizing the majority of the Bill Of Rights, your dream could always happen. You can keep your Minority Report fantasy land. It has no room for me or any other free men. I want no part of it, aside from encouraging its utter downfall, and placing it in the history books alongside other failures such as the Soviets and their Iron Curtain, the Khmer Rouge, and the Nazis.

  6. Not exactly reputable sources.

    Nor do these sonic wonders (and cameras and plate-readers and facial recognition software) actually stop anything.

    I wonder how those “sonic sensors” would react to getting skewered with a hunting arrow? Or pounded flat with a hammer? Surveillance is for prisoners — or, rarely, criminal suspects when a judge is convinced sufficient cause exists. Used against free men and women, it’s a tool of oppression. They’ll change the nature of society for the worse.

    If you want people to act like criminals, treat them like criminals; if you want the to act like responsible citizens…treat ’em that way. And don’t keep them from defending themselves against the evil and the irresponsible who initiate force.

    As Jeff Cooper wrote, “I would like very much to ensure … that any man who offers violence to his fellow citizen begets a whole lot more in return than he can enjoy.” (IMO, ideally at the hands of his intended victim).

  7. ubu: The plural of “anecdote” is not “data”.

    The majority of that news report is no more useful to analyzing the true effectiveness of ShotSpotter than is the article posted at Fox News. Where are the actual raw crime statistics that three-second flash of a bar graph is based upon, including data from prior to the system’s installation so that a comparison may be made? Where is the list of violent crimes that wouldn’t have been solved without ShotSpotter?

    And will police departments use it as effectively and responsibly as they have used their existing surveillance cameras?

  8. ubu’s fantasy life is pretty hilarious when you combine that with the reports that LAPD couldn’t even successfully deploy cameras in downtown Los Angeles without breaking them.

  9. ShotSpotter is one mp3 away from obsolete. All those $5K car sound systems in the ghettos? What if someone made a decent, clean recording of shots fired, and distributed it among the ganstas? Soon, every pimpmobile with a $5K sound outfit in it would be “shooting”, and ShotSpotter would be having cops chase all over hell and gone only to find nothing. Sure, they might suspect they’d been spoofed, but aside of writing from probably-unconstitutional law against making noises that sound like shots fired, what could be the response?

    Many departments that have installed ShotSpotter have shut it down to to the already-large rate of false alarms, and no one is spoofing it yet.

    Besides, it’s already been proven that the only robotic systems the cops can really get into are the ones that generate revenue, and ShotSpotter brings in zero coin of the realm.

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