NYPD begins using ShotSpotter to detect gunshots

A new high-tech program meant to help police determine where gunshots are fired, even if no one calls 911, is now active in the Bronx.

The technology pinpoints the scene of a shooting and immediately dispatches officers.

The technology pinpoints the scene of a shooting and immediately dispatches officers. (3/17/15)

THE BRONX - A new high-tech program meant to help police determine where gunshots are fired, even if no one calls 911, is now active in the Bronx.

The technology, called the ShotSpotter, works like a GPS triangulation system to identify the location and direction of gunfire. It's made up of multiple sensors, which are in essence very sensitive microphones.

The ShotSpotter is designed to decrease officer response time and enhance public safety by immediately pinpointing the scene of the crime and dispatching cops to the location. Mayor Bill de Blasio and Police Commissioner Bill Bratton say the pilot program will transform the way the NYPD responds to gunfire activity.

The system is being installed in areas with a history of high gun violence. The Bronx is the first borough to launch the ShotSpotter, with seven police precincts participating.

Based on the results of the program, the NYPD may expand the technology so police officers can receive alerts directly on their smartphones or tablets.

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