COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KRDO) -- To combat the rise of gun violence in the Pikes Peak area, the Colorado Springs Police Department has adopted a gunshot detection system that helps officers determine where shots were fired.
The department implemented the system in 2018. Police say the system is similar to ShotSpotter, which is what the Denver Police Department uses. In Denver, the system is placed across all six districts the department covers.
According to data shared from the Denver Police Department, their system sent out close to 3,000 alerts to officers in 2020. With the head start of where the shootings happened, police were able to make 105 arrests for gun-related crimes and recovered 77 firearms.
Tuesday night, officers conducted a live-fire calibration testing of their gunshot detection system. The testing was done in the Valley Hi, Park Hill, and Pikes Peak neighborhoods.
While police warned people of the noise and disturbance, some residents said they thought the gunshot detection system helped.
“It’s cool to be able to tell when shots are fired but that is not preventing the shots from being fired,” said Janet Cook, who lives in southeast Colorado Springs near Chelton and Academy where one of the detection systems is in place.
Cook and other residents told KRDO they often hear shots being fired throughout their neighborhood.
“Over the summer it was not uncommon to hear gunshots two, three, or even four gunshots a week,” Cook said.
KRDO reached out to the Colorado Springs Police Department requesting data similar to Denver's to analyze the effectiveness of the gunshot detection system. The department declined to release the data and said the following:
We notify the public so there is no community concern but do not release information on how they work, what they look like, etc. in order to protect the program's integrity.Colorado Springs Police Department
In August, Chicago's watchdog agency reported ShotSpotter rarely produces evidence of gun-related crime in the city. The system came under scrutiny after it allegedly set in motion events that led to the shooting of a 13-year-old boy by Chicago police.