While residents in the U.S. are enjoying the surplus of new technological consumer devices, police departments everywhere are trying to see how technology could help them stop the crime. According to Police Chief Magazine, it's essential for police departments to stay current with new technological developments. Officers in the field should not only be cognizant of new technology, but they should also know how to use it effectively.
Law enforcement must consider several factors when purchasing new devices for their police department. According to the source, operational needs should be one of the first issues to solve when adopting new technology. Police departments need to know exactly how the technology works to develop more efficient officers in the field.
Another factor for police departments obtaining new technology is the cost-effectiveness. Having the latest crime control software can be a significant investment, so law enforcement executives have to weigh the potential benefits of obtaining a new device. One potential benefit is when new technology is brought into an organization, it can significantly boost morale and increase confidence among officers, reported Police Chief Magazine.
New gunfire locating technology a game-changer
In South Bend, Ind., police officers are using a new technology to locate gunfire in the city. According to CBS affiliate WSBT, the new technology automatically tells the SBPD when it hears gunshots fired, and it can also find the location of the shots, and even narrow it down to the person who fired them.
The system uses acoustic sensors that are strategically set up on rooftops around the city, and the devices pick up the gunfire audio within their range. The high-tech devices send information to the SBPD immediately with detailed information on the near-exact location.
The city receives about 10 percent of 911 calls from gun shots, and the new system is changing the way the police department handles gunfire. Capt. Phil Trent told WSBT the department was originally skeptical with the technology, but soon the data started pointing out crimes that would have normally gone unnoticed.
"From the information we're getting, this is taking us to piles of shell casings in the street, it's leading us to guns thrown in an alley, it's leading us to parties that have been shot, it's leading us to suspects," Trent told the source.
Police departments around the U.S. are finding that new situational awareness technology is reducing crime rates and increasing case resolutions.