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IMPD will not proceed with gunshot detection systems

IMPD not going forward with gunshot detection system

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — The Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department announced it will not continue with gunshot detection system technology.

The program, now concluded, tested the offerings of three different vendors on the city’s east side, IMPD said in a release Thursday.

“When I was appointed as Acting Chief, Mayor Hogsett tasked me with the responsibility to explore all available technology options that have the potential to modernize the department, enhance our ability to respond quickly and efficiently to incidents, and provide officers with better support as they work to improve the safety of our neighborhoods,” said Chief Bailey. “After thorough consideration of the report from the pilot period, IMPD will forgo a gunshot detection system and instead invest in more impactful and fiscally responsible solutions.”

IMPD says the report, which was put together to find out which of the three systems would be best for the community, was compiled by an academic partner and an IMPD working group.

“It found that gunshot detection technology led to about the same amount of evidence collected as 9-1-1 calls did.  While the report found that some of the systems tested allowed officers to respond to the scene faster, it did not take into consideration outside factors such as where officers were located when the call was dispatched,” IMPD said in a release.

According to IMPD, the gunshot detection technology allowed officers to respond quicker in some instances, ” but it was not to the extent that it improved public safety outcomes. Through careful review of these results, public safety officials have determined the level of effectiveness of gunshot detection technology was incommensurate with the costs associated. Additionally, there were concerns about the reliability, efficacy, and potential biases of the technology.”

Chief Baily says the department remains committed to other kinds of safety technology including safety cameras, B-link technology, and automated license plate readers.

The American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funding originally allotted to gunshot detection technology was $1,012,445. This funding now will be used toward Smart Tasers, a less-lethal option for officers encountering violent situations. 


“Today (3/28/2024) we learned of the final decision by the IMPD to scrap the implementation of a Gunshot Detection System for the Capital City.

“This component was a key piece to the overall technology package called for by the FOP in January 2019.

“We believe this decision is short sighted and flawed.

“As funded, such a move could have provided a total of five (5) square miles of coverage.

“Our recommendation provided multiple footprints throughout the city.

“For example, the mile-square to cover downtown Indianapolis.

“Additionally coverage could have been provided over other locations such as: Broad Ripple, Fountain Square, 10th/Rural area, Irvington, the Far East Side, and the 38th Street and 82nd Street corridors.

“These locations are known for tourism, high pedestrian/vehicular traffic, and densely populated neighborhoods which have also been concurrent with crimes involving guns and the threat of mass attacks.

“It is our hope elected and appointed leaders of Indianapolis will reconsider this technology resource moving forward.”

Fraternal Order of Police Lodge No. 86, Indianapolis

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