MPD buys gunshot recognition cameras to help fight crime - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

MPD buys gunshot recognition cameras to help fight crime

(WMC-TV) - Soon there will be even more eyes on the streets of Memphis to keep you safe.

The Memphis Police Department is not adding more police to its staff, but instead, more Skycop cameras -- gunshot recognition cameras.

The cameras will be purchased with grant money the department was awarded.

Private surveillance equipment dealers describe the gunshot recognition cameras as new technology that could prove invaluable to law enforcement.

As soon as a gunshot goes off, the cameras spin around to the sound catching the shooter in the act.

Joe Everson is a retired Sheriff's deputy who now owns i-SPY and sells all kinds of surveillance and tracking equipment.

"Bottom line is, you can actually throw a dime in this parking lot and if you know who to call you can call them and they'll tell you if it's heads or tails," said Joe Everson, i-SPY.

As with the other 400-plus cameras posted throughout the city, all of the new cameras will be routed into the Real Time Crime Center.

Speaking at a community event on Tuesday night, Memphis Police Director Toney Armstrong did not let on about the department's new purchase but told the crowd that Skycop cameras do not solve everything.

"I don't want to give you a false sense of security that a Skycop is the end all be all of everything. It is not," Armstrong said. "The end all be all to everything is you. It's you all taking responsibility for your communities."

Police say statistics determine camera placement and potentially high crime areas get first dibs.

"Cops can't be there all the time. They have to rely on technology to help them out and this is going to be a great tool for them," said Everson.

Two gunshot recognition cameras are on the way and 10 more have been bid out. In addition, the department say it plans to purchase 50 more pole-mounted Skycop cameras and six more mobile trailer-mounted Skycop cameras.

There is no timetable on the cameras' deployment.

Copyright 2013 WMC-TV. All rights reserved.

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