pcloudy.png
Sunday July 12th, 2020 3:19PM

South Africa uses new tech to fight vicious gun violence

By The Associated Press
Related Articles
  Contact Editor

CAPE TOWN, South Africa (AP) — As gunshots ring out in one of South Africa's most dangerous neighborhoods, a new technology detects the gun's location and immediately alerts police.

South Africa is the first country outside the United States to implement the "shotspotter" audio technology, which is also being used to fight wildlife poaching on the other end of the country in Kruger National Park.

The technology's use in Cape Town's notoriously violent Cape Flats area has contributed for the first time this year to a conviction in a gang shooting. Police hope more will follow.

"About 13 percent of gunshots are reported by the public. Now we respond to every single incident, very rapidly," said City of Cape Town Alderman J.P. Smith, who instituted the technology in the Manenberg and Hanover Park neighborhoods in 2016. "It's accurate to between 2 meters and 10 meters (6 feet to 33 feet) of where the shot was fired."

The recovery of illegal guns has jumped five-fold in the areas where the shotspotter is used, Smith said. The technology also provides accurate data about gun violence.

The technology operates by acoustic sensors which are placed throughout a neighborhood and Cape Town plans to expand its use from the current 7 square kilometers to 18 square kilometers (3 sq. miles to 7 sq. miles).

South Africa has one of the highest rates of murder in the world. On Tuesday, police announced that the rate was up about 7 percent, with 20,336 people murdered between April 2017 and March, compared to 19,016 in the previous year. Many were linked to gang violence in Western Cape province, whose capital is Cape Town.

The national homicide rate of 34 per 100,000 people spikes in parts of the Cape Flats to up to 250 per 100,000, according to the University of Cape Town.

"The Cape Flats violence has its roots in apartheid policy," said Simon Howell of the nonprofit African Policing Civilian Oversight Forum. "When colored people (South African term for people of mixed race) were forcibly evicted from their areas and dumped in the Cape Flats, people lost all their social ties that used to form an identity."

Gangs evolved from that treatment of the mixed-race population during white-minority rule, say experts.

"Violence begets violence," said University of Cape Town criminologist Guy Lamb. "Since 1994 we've had high levels of unemployment, poverty, inequality . and these dynamics have fed into the high violent crime rate."

Lamb lamented the fact that the national police force is not using the new technology.

Howell, however, questioned it as an effective response to Cape Flats gun violence.

"It has its role to play, but unfortunately in South Africa policing is our primary response and that is never going to solve the issue," he said.

One Manenberg resident, Shakier Adams, explained what life is like on the Cape Flats.

"Growing up, you are literally caught in crossfire on a daily basis. You have to be careful who you speak to, where you go, whoever you associate yourself with."

___

Follow Africa news at https://twitter.com/AP_Africa

  • Associated Categories: Associated Press (AP), AP World News, AP Technology News
© Copyright 2020 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
5 slain in Southern California shootings; gunman kills self
Authorities say a gunman in California has killed five people, including his wife, before turning the gun on himself as a sheriff's deputy closed in
4:31AM ( 48 minutes ago )
UK to pay 'substantially' less to EU in event of no deal
Britain is warning the European Union that it will only make its full divorce payment if there is a Brexit deal.
4:29AM ( 50 minutes ago )
US, Cuba to meet on mystery 'health attacks' in Havana
U.S. and Cuban officials are meeting later today in new effort to determine the method and motive behind mystery incidents in Havana that have injured American diplomats
4:20AM ( 1 hour ago )
Associated Press (AP)
The Apple Watch is inching toward becoming a medical device
Apple is trying to turn its smartwatch into a life preserver with features that gain key clearances from US government regulators
3:05AM ( 2 hours ago )
New Mexico sues mobile app makers over kid privacy concerns
New Mexico is suing Google, Twitter and other companies that develop and market mobile gaming apps for children, saying the apps violate state laws by collecting personal information that could compromise privacy
9:48PM ( 7 hours ago )
The Latest: Apple's new deluxe iPhone to start at $1,100
Apple's newest iPhone will again test the limits of how much people are willing to pay for the latest technology.
2:51PM ( 14 hours ago )
AP Technology News
5 slain in Southern California shootings; gunman kills self
Authorities say a gunman in California has killed five people, including his wife, before turning the gun on himself as a sheriff's deputy closed in
4:31AM ( 48 minutes ago )
UK to pay 'substantially' less to EU in event of no deal
Britain is warning the European Union that it will only make its full divorce payment if there is a Brexit deal.
4:29AM ( 50 minutes ago )
US, Cuba to meet on mystery 'health attacks' in Havana
U.S. and Cuban officials are meeting later today in new effort to determine the method and motive behind mystery incidents in Havana that have injured American diplomats
4:20AM ( 1 hour ago )
German spy chief's future creates new strains in government
The future of Germany's domestic intelligence chief is creating new strains in Chancellor Angela Merkel's coalition government following much-criticized comments about recent far-right protests in the eastern city of Chemnitz
4:18AM ( 1 hour ago )
Rinse, repeat: Rhode Island governor fight will mirror 2014
Rhode Island's Democratic governor won her party's nomination for a second term in Wednesday's primary, overcoming a spirited but poorly funded challenge, while the mayor of the state's second-largest city earned the GOP nomination
3:47AM ( 1 hour ago )