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My Statement on the Johnson Administration's Shotspotter Contract Cancellation

While Shotspotter has not been a perfect tool to help combat crime in Chicago, it has helped catch criminals by helping police pinpoint where gunshots are fired and quickly moving to that location. The sound technology, paired with cameras in the area help officers in Strategic decision Support Centers (based in at the district stations) do their job much more efficiently. Many aldermen and communities with Shotspotter technology appreciate the extra tool that the present leadership and several former Chicago Police Department Superintendents also found to be necessary. 

In a mayoral press conference after City Council, the Mayor couldn’t explain to the public his process for the decision. The contract cancellation means that the tech will go off line tonight. But later, in an about face, the Mayor then said he wanted to do a short term contract and keep it through mid-September, post Democratic National Convention. 

SoundThinking never agreed to a six month extension and responded, “Contrary to those discussions and without consultation with SoundThinking, on February 12, 2024, Mayor Johnson announced a decommission plan, involving an extension of ShotSpotter through September 22, 2024, one month after the Democratic National Convention in Chicago. We believe the shared goal of an extension period must provide the best possible data and analysis to the residents of the City of Chicago through greater transparency and reporting standards. The way this is secured is through a minimum 12-month extension and modifications to the city’s current data and reporting protocols.”

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