May 27, 2022

Oxford High School testing new technology to detect guns in school

OXFORD, Mich. – A high-tech way to quickly detect weapons in schools is getting a test run in Metro Detroit.

After the deadly shooting at Oxford High School, the district made major investments in new security. Now a new artificial intelligence is being tested on campus.

The technology is used in more than a dozen schools, malls, offices and other places across the country already. According to the company, it’s been able to find more than 1,000 real or fake firearms since it launched in 2018. But for the district, tis’ not just about what the system sees, but what the students don’t see.

Read: What to know about the OK2SAY tipline: How to report crimes, threats at Michigan schools

The Oxford school district is already installing firearm recognition artificial intelligence software called ZeroEyes. The system scans security camera footage looking for semi- or fully brandished weapons.

Those images are then sent to a central hub out of state, where human monitors are able to decide within seconds if the system found a real threat or if it’s a false alarm. If the threat is real, an alert with a picture is sent directly to Oakland County Dispatch.

Oxford officials have spent months looking through dozens of security companies and strategies, but always with the students’ mental health in mind. Working to keep the school a school and not a fortress.

The district is also plotting another new security measure starting next week called Evolv, which is a passive biometric scanner that looks for weapons — but is also non-invasive. Both Evolv and ZeroEyes are free to the district for now. The ZeroEyes system has a year-long grant before Oxford has to decide on a contract.

Read: Oakland County sheriff offers perspective after 19 children murdered in Texas school shooting

If you, or someone you know, is struggling with suicidal thoughts you are not alone. Help is available. The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is available 24/7 to provide support at 800-273-8255.

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