Fighting Crime with Hi-Tech in Chicago May Help Police’s Law Enforcement Efforts
During 2016, the City of Chicago experienced a steep rise in crime rate. More the 760 cases of homicide were reported along with increasing shooting incidents on the streets. For this reason, decision-makers have decided upon fighting crime with hi-tech; that is, using what advanced technology has to offer to assist law officers in making the streets a little safer.
To begin with, police are going to use more efficient strategies to cope with criminals. Two centers for strategic planning will be established in cooperation with the University of Chicago Crime Lab. Police officers hope to use experts’ insights regarding the best way to react to events the moment they occur.
In addition, daily police work is going to rely more and more on ShotSpotters, which are sophisticated sensors meant to give indication of shooting incidents in real time, thus allowing police officers to respond instantly.
This surveillance technology, it should be mentioned, is not novel. Currently, there are a few sensors installed in various parts of Chicago. The plan is to increase the number to 44 sensors mainly in areas where shooting is frequent.
The need for
The main problem police are facing today is the unwillingness of the public to cooperate with them in solving shooting crimes. Most people are reluctant to assist law enforcement agencies fearing retribution from gangs. Others tend to rely on street justice rather than the law.
With advanced surveillance technology at their disposal, police hope they will not need to rely on the public to catch shooters.
Grim violent crime statistics
The number of reported homicide and shooting cases in Chicago has increased by 65% and 88% respectively in 2016 Compared to 2015. 762 people were murdered in 2016 compared to 496 a year before. 66% of the murders occurred in the south and west sides of the city and were the results of gang activity. On Christmas weekend alone 12 murders were recorded.
New York Police Department is also using the technology of ShotSpotters in order to track shooting incidents