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San Diego police to deliver ShotSpotter report

Gunfire detection system works 16 percent of the time

How the ShotSpotter system is supposed to work
How the ShotSpotter system is supposed to work

The audio sensors that the San Diego Police Department installed to alert them to gunfire in four southeastern San Diego neighborhoods works 16 percent of the time, according to data collected since the ShotSpotter system was installed last November.

The system of sensors mounted on light poles and other structures sends a report to police dispatch when activated by gunfire. Police data indicate gunshots were detected 90 percent of the time when within 95 feet of the sensors.

From November 2016 to September 5, 2017, ShotSpotter's sensors were activated 131 times. But when police arrived they found evidence of gunshots at only 21 of the 131 sites. During one incident, police confiscated a firearm from two juveniles. The new data show that the ShotSpotter resulted in investigations two out of ten times.

Representatives from the police department will present the findings this week during a meeting of the Public Safety and Livable Neighborhoods city-council committee. In the presentation, the department expresses the benefits of the system.

"[ShotSpotter] deployment in San Diego has given a voice to the voiceless members of our community who are in fear of reporting gun violence to the police," reads the staff report.

Proponents say only 23 percent of gunshots fired are reported to police. The report says the system helps build trust within the community. Trust is among the concerns for some public advocacy groups. The Electronic Frontier Foundation has objected to mass data collection systems such as ShotSpotter. They say that the collection of data during the time that no gunshots are fired violates the public's right to privacy.

The system costs just under $250,000 a year. San Diego's district attorney's office agreed to pay for the first year of operation.

The city-council committee will discuss ShotSpotter on Wednesday, October 4, at 2 p.m. at city hall.

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How the ShotSpotter system is supposed to work
How the ShotSpotter system is supposed to work

The audio sensors that the San Diego Police Department installed to alert them to gunfire in four southeastern San Diego neighborhoods works 16 percent of the time, according to data collected since the ShotSpotter system was installed last November.

The system of sensors mounted on light poles and other structures sends a report to police dispatch when activated by gunfire. Police data indicate gunshots were detected 90 percent of the time when within 95 feet of the sensors.

From November 2016 to September 5, 2017, ShotSpotter's sensors were activated 131 times. But when police arrived they found evidence of gunshots at only 21 of the 131 sites. During one incident, police confiscated a firearm from two juveniles. The new data show that the ShotSpotter resulted in investigations two out of ten times.

Representatives from the police department will present the findings this week during a meeting of the Public Safety and Livable Neighborhoods city-council committee. In the presentation, the department expresses the benefits of the system.

"[ShotSpotter] deployment in San Diego has given a voice to the voiceless members of our community who are in fear of reporting gun violence to the police," reads the staff report.

Proponents say only 23 percent of gunshots fired are reported to police. The report says the system helps build trust within the community. Trust is among the concerns for some public advocacy groups. The Electronic Frontier Foundation has objected to mass data collection systems such as ShotSpotter. They say that the collection of data during the time that no gunshots are fired violates the public's right to privacy.

The system costs just under $250,000 a year. San Diego's district attorney's office agreed to pay for the first year of operation.

The city-council committee will discuss ShotSpotter on Wednesday, October 4, at 2 p.m. at city hall.

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4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
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