Is ShotSpotter the solution to Toronto gun violence

And then on Sunday, Canada Goose online 10 year old Julianna Kozis and 18 year old Reese Fallon were killed in a mass shooting on Toronto’s Danforth uk canada goose Avenue. Thirteen other people were wounded.

Canada Goose online Julianna Kozis, left, and Reese Fallon, right, were killed after a deadly rampage in Toronto’s Greektown Sunday night. (Toronto Police Service/Facebook) Canada Goose online

Within two days of the Danforth shooting, Toronto city canada goose uk black friday council voted to canada goose outlet tentatively move Canada Goose sale forward with a plan to purchase ShotSpotter, an audio surveillance system that detects and tracks the sound of gunshots in cities and neighbourhoods.

canada goose coats on sale Toronto’s Mayor, John Tory, and the police chief Mark Saunders, say ShotSpotter is a much needed tool in the fight against gun violence. canada goose coats on sale

Lilian Radovac teaches at the University of Toronto’s Institute of Communication, Culture, Information and Technology. Among her areas of expertise are urban history and sound studies. That makes her interest in audio surveillance systems more than just a passing curiosity.

canada goose deals On the morning after the mass shooting in Toronto last weekend, she wrote to her local city councillor expressing her concerns about ShotSpotter. canada goose deals

Lilian Radovac tells Day 6 host Brent Bambury that Toronto officials should not allow their understandably emotional response to this Canada Goose Parka very tragic event cloud their judgment about ShotSpotter.

canada goose clearance Brent Bambury: Immediately after the shooting you wrote to your city councillor, about ShotSpotter. Why? canada goose clearance

Canada Goose Outlet Lilian Radovac: I am very nervous about canada goose black friday sale this system and I was concerned that Toronto was on the precipice of adopting a software that I knew a little bit about and had some reservations about. And then that just went into high alert mode after the shooting because I knew that councillors would be feeling a lot of pressure to do something. Canada Goose Outlet

BB: You’re not alone in having reservations, but Toronto is not alone in thinking about this system. Two of the largest cities in the United States, Chicago and New York, have canada goose store adopted this technology. In Chicago it was expanded last year. Are those two jurisdictions, along with the uk canada goose outlet 85 others that have Canada Goose Online purchased the buy canada goose jacket system, are they making a mistake?

LR: I know for a fact because I lived in New York for two years, I lived in Brooklyn, that there are a lot of people in that city that have concerns about over surveillance of certain communities especially in Brooklyn and the Bronx. I know Chicago probably shares similar concerns, but I also know that both have city mayors who have pushed very hard for these kinds of surveillance technologies. But there [are] definitely canada goose uk outlet critiques on the ground to be sure.

buy canada goose jacket cheap BB: Well, let’s look at your critiques, because sound studies is your field. What have you learned about the effectiveness of the ShotSpotter technology? buy canada goose jacket cheap

LR: Well, the first thing I learned was that there is very little public information about it. ShotSpotter data, which it collects through placing microphones in targeted communities, is kept private and that’s proprietary. So it’s not released to the public for people like me or journalists to analyze.

But what I did come across was some great reporting by Matt Drange, who at that time was an investigative journalist with Forbes magazine. So, you know, a decent reputable magazine not a a small rag who managed to get information from what he calls customer Canada Goose Jackets cities. And he evaluated that information and discovered that very few arrests resulted from the alerts that were produced by this technology. There were a whole lot of alerts, but very few cases of actual summonses or arrests that came out of this.

canada goose store BB: But the claim that the people who develop this technology make is that this can pinpoint the location of a shot fired and do so rather quickly. So arrest is just one metric. An alert might be another important metric. If police can get to the position of a shot faster because of this technology, is that not valuable? canada goose store

buy canada goose jacket LR: And that is, in fact, the main canadian goose jacket argument: that it reduces the time that it takes for a police officer to get to a potential crime scene. What’s interesting is that and this is according to Drange’s analysis depending on the jurisdiction, between 30 and 70 percent of the alerts that went in and were in fact referred to police, brought the police officers out, led them to investigation and they found no evidence of canada goose coats any shooting or, in fact, in some cases of any crime at all. buy canada goose jacket

cheap Canada Goose The problem is that when you bring a police officer into a place for an investigation remember they’re being told ’this is a probable gunshot’ their adrenaline is probably up. They go into a community looking for criminals. And that means that they’re going into over policed communities. And if the rate of error a rate of alerts that turn out to be nothing is as high as 30 to 70 percent, you’re looking at a lot of unnecessary police investigations in canada goose factory sale neighbourhoods that are already over policed and targeted and profiled. cheap Canada Goose

canadian goose jacket ShotSpotter (SST) app mobile screen (ShotSpotter) canadian goose jacket

Canada Goose Parka Let’s say out of all of these alerts, and I think that the numbers for Oakland, which is where ShotSpotter began, is 1,725 alerts and out of all of those pings: four arrests. I think we would say arresting four bad people is a good thing. But, how many people were investigated in comparison to those four arrests? Canada Goose Parka

BB: I want to go back to the missing evidence, the fact that you said earlier that there is not enough data for you to be able to make a decision based on the science. Why do you think that evidence is being suppressed?

canada goose clearance sale LR: It’s a matter of monetizing that information. So it’s not suppression in the sense that we would think like ‘ooh, scary political suppression’ or something like that. Not at all. But these are private tech companies who are monetizing this knowledge to sell a product. So canada goose clearance sale they want to be able to control that information; canada goose uk shop they want to be able to control the analysis. canada goose clearance sale

Canada Goose sale It’s like a drug company. Drug companies produce really good things, pharmaceuticals that can help people save lives. But ideally we want independent researchers to be able to evaluate studies to be sure that ‘you know what, that drug Canada Goose Coats On Sale is good, it’s going to help people, it’s not going to kill people by accident.’ Canada Goose sale

canada goose coats I think that’s probably the biggest concern right now, and the thing we should be lobbying for, to cheap Canada Goose make sure that public researchers including journalists are able to access this information and truly evaluate whether or not it’s effective. canada goose coats

Canada Goose Jackets BB: There are also the concerns of privacy abrogations in the regions where the technology is being installed. Do you think that that is a reasonable concern? Canada Goose Jackets

canada goose black friday sale LR: I think privacy is a huge issue. In fact, I think it’s the one we tend to talk about most frequently when we talk about city tech. And I think that’s a very interesting question when you look at targeted communities. Because then you think about unequal notions of privacy, does somebody in the Annex have a greater expectation of privacy than someone living at Jane and Finch? And that’s a very interesting entry point. canada goose black friday sale

canada goose BB: This is a city that went through a lot of pain this week. Three people are dead. Many people are wounded. There was a shooting in a residential neighbourhood at a time when people should be out with their families enjoying themselves. That shooting happened on Sunday night. City Council voted on Tuesday. What was lacking in the conversation, on ShotSpotter, in that duration of time? canada goose

LR: It can be one thing to try to address the tragedy and the grief and the trauma that Torontonians are feeling. canada goose clearance That’s valid, that’s important and that’s a big part of the role of a city councillor. But that’s a very separate question from whether or not a technology that will cost us four million dollars is actually going to work to address the core concerns. The evidence that we have to this point which is paltry, admittedly, says it won’t help. Of course we’re going to have emotional responses. These are horrible tragedies. Torontonians are in shock, without question, but that’s not good municipal policy.