Toronto Police to Double Surveillance Cameras, Add Gunshot Detection

Toronto Police to Double Surveillance Cameras, Add Gunshot Detection

Toronto Police hope to bolster city security with more surveillance.

After a surge of violence attributed mostly to gangs, the Toronto Police Services Board will ask the city for up to $4 million to more than double the amount of public CCTV cameras and install a web of microphones on rooftops that pinpoint gunshot locations and send alerts to police.

Toronto has had more than 285 shooting victims so far this year and 27 deaths. These cases pose unique challenges for police, who find it hard to acquire statements from witness and victims reluctant to speak. Police say the technology could fill in the gaps in information.

The $4 million would cover 40 extra cameras, boosting the city's roster from 34 to 74 as well as the gunshot detection technology which would be installed at rooftops.

The city had general worries about the privacy aspect of adding additional cameras and microphones, but the gunshot detection technology company, ShotSpotter, was quick to note that the technology only records two seconds before the gunshot and four seconds after and it would be installed too high for it to catch personal conversations.

The motion to approve the funding for the cameras and ShotSpotter will be discussed at the city council meeting on July 23.

About the Author

Sydny Shepard is the Executive Editor of Campus Security & Life Safety.

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