Elected Officials Have Unique Challenges:
Pledge to protect underserved communities.
Pressured to drive programs that reduce gun violence and homicides in high crime areas.
Need to address low social and economic growth areas of a community.
Many of our elected officials – federal, state and local – are joining their communities across the country to jump-start programs to fight gun violence, get creative about finding the funding, and build on those initiatives that are leveraging the latest gun detection, alerting and analysis solutions that are available today.
Learn How Kansas City elected officials funded ShotSpotter
In May of 2012, Rep. Cleaver in Missouri helped to get ShotSpotter in Kansas City after he saw how effective it was in Washington, D.C. He worked with the KCATA (Kansas City Area Transportation Authority) to reprogram federal grant dollars left over when their Troost Max project came in under budget to a public safety project that benefited everyone. KCATA Executive Director Mark Huffer stated that this was “the first police-transit ShotSpotter partnership in the nation.” Chief Darrel Forte of KCPD said that “ShotSpotter has the power to get officers to shooters and victims very quickly and it’s a great crime-fighting tool.”
In 2016, Councilman Jermaine Reed, along with the Prospect MAX Advisory Committee continued to support police-transit ShotSpotter program efforts. Councilman Reed and Prospect MAX Advisory Committee examine areas where transit could foster development as well as potential sites for new bus rapid transit stations along the proposed route. Reed and officials from the KCATA have traveled to Washington to discuss the Prospect transit project with officials from the Federal Transit Administration. The project is already in the pipeline for federal funding and this new transit funding may enable more ShotSpotter funds to expand efforts in Kansas City’s most troubled neighborhoods.
Today, ShotSpotter is currently funded by the Kansas City Area Transit Authority through grant funding which is funding to renew and hopefully enlarge the coverage area to continue all of the benefits realized thus far.
Why ShotSpotter works for Kansas City
Through the use of ShotSpotter technology, specific enhanced incident reports created by ShotSpotter have been used in numerous aggravated assault and homicide investigations to identify specific locations of shots being fired. These locations have led to increased evidence collection, identification of potential witnesses, disproving potential false claims by suspects, and time saved processing these intricate scenes. In several instances, the Kansas City Police department have been able to arrive at the scene to apprehend the suspect who is still in possession of the firearm.
Increase police visibility in areas of KNOWN gunfire.
Increase recovery of evidence of gunshots.
Help build relationship in the communities that are affected by gunfire.
Lead to dozens of incidences of shell casings recovered that otherwise would have gone unnoticed.
Build countless relationships have been built with community members in the areas around gunfire events.
ShotSpotter technology has allowed us to focus our efforts on enhancing safety along transportation corridors and within our neighborhoods. Through the use of this technology the Kansas City Police Department has increased visibility in high crime areas thus improving police /community relations and providing adequate information towards solving gun related crimes.
Kansas City Councilman
What can be done?
Gun crimes -- the illegal use of guns – create an unsafe environment in which our citizens do not feel secure at home in their own communities. There are numerous laws already in place that make it illegal to fire a gun in an urban area. Greater focus must be placed on enforcing existing legislation.
And you can influence that.
Encourage your representatives to promote community safety and address gun violence through upholding existing gun legislation around the illegal use of guns.
Gun Buy-Back Programs
Text Message Tip Lines
The Reporting of Lost or Stolen Firearms
Gunshot Detection and Location Technology
Download ShotSpotter Elected Officials Datasheet