More cameras, surveillance sensors may be installed in Wichita neighborhoods

WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – Whatever it takes to prevent crime, the City of Wichita is willing to consider it.

“Right now we are going through a situation where it seems that the criminal activity is on the rise,” says District 1 City Councilwoman Lavonta Williams.

One option, acoustic sensors, through a program called Shot Spotter.

If a gun shot is fired, the installed sensors will track how long the sound took to get to the sensor, within 25 meters, and triangulate the exact spot where it happened on a map. A police officer is alerted in seconds, instead of having to wait on secondhand information that dispatchers are getting.

Another option on the table is one wichita police are getting comfortable with — cameras.

They could install 17 more in the city in an area where gun shots are on the rise.

The cameras would link up to the same system the ones in Old Town are on and would give police a live look at certain areas in the city.

“I don’t know I am really torn in between the two I really can’t say,” says Wichitan Candance Burnette.

Burnette says the technology pushes the envelope of privacy, but it may be worth it.

“It will help people out to get justice for their family members that they have lost or can’t find the shooter. On another end I just know a lot of people won’t especially in the area’s they are probably going to go towards.”

The ventures would cost around $290,000 but another option is to hire an additional police officer.

Next Tuesday Wichita City Council will vote to see which options they will include to allow residents to share their opinions on in future public hearings.

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