St. Louis technology detects lots of gunfire, but calls often lead to a dead end

St. Louis was one of the first cities to adopt ShotSpotter technology, which uses a network of microphones, software, and human monitors to detect and analyze gunshot sounds. The detection system summoned police more than 15,000 times last year. Only 1% of those calls in a 10-year span yielded enough evidence to result in a police report, and only 13 arrests resulted. There is no evidence that the system actually reduced gun violence. Advocates say the system, which costs St. Louis taxpayers and a nonprofit group more than $1 million per year, yields other useful intelligence and should be maintained.

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