Fresno, CA (TFC) – The intersection at Blackstone and Englewood in Fresno, CA was one of spectacle Monday evening. The police turned Susan B. Anthony Elementary School into their own personal firing range, drawing citizens in the area from their homes, and activists everywhere in protest of the Shot Spotter technology recently installed in the area. Video below is of the events that took place, including a volunteer officer trying to ask me to pay her to hear further police propaganda.
The first portion of this video depicts a scene difficult to decipher. Two police officers with weapons drawn flanked a large unoccupied home in the area, which has been vacant for some time. Off camera the officers assured us they were on scene at a call for squatters on the property. However, no squatters were present, and no owner or concerned citizens were there to speak with us or the police. Circling around the block we came back and followed more officers to the dark scene at Susan B. Anthony Elementary School.
First, this exercise was not part of Jade Helm. The implications of the drill that was conducted by police Monday evening were actually more frightening than Jade Helm 15. There were news and social media shares suggesting this was a soft Jade Helm operation. There was no military presence on site. The police were basically shooting various caliber, fragmenting rounds into a reinforced container. This cannot be construed as a military event, if that’s the case.. If you want to hear the backdrop behind Jade Helm, read The Truth About Jade Helm.
So why were the police firing off multiple caliber rounds at an elementary school just outside Downtown Fresno? We were told that Shot Spotter technology previously placed in undisclosed locations around this particular neighborhood needed to be calibrated.
The technology is basically a sensor capable of detecting sub-sonic to supersonic sound frequencies associated with live gunfire, explosions, etc. It works in conjunction with an application for smart devices that can then track when the sensor was triggered, triangulate the point the shot came from, and supposedly they can then respond faster to where shots have been fired before receiving a call to respond. The government reasons that this technology is used for public safety.
“Designed for civilian and critical infrastructure applications. Multiple, collaborating sensors calculate geolocation of attack. Detects attacks from any direction and weapons fired in 360degrees relative to the sensor. Detects subsonic & supersonic sounds, including handguns fired at close range. Covers 10s of square miles. Delivers real-time, actionable information. Creates data base of incidents and trends.”
I thought it interesting that this technology is being installed and calibrated directly before the weekend Americans take to their front yard making noise. In an interview with the FPD Captain on the scene, a few questions were answered to give us a little more clarity. I asked specifically if an illegal firework that went off in the area could have messed up the calibration of the department’s new toy.
“That’s kind of the benefit of this system. It differentiates between gunshots, and any other loud noises like fireworks.”
There is critical debate over this new technology. The officials will have you believe that this little bit of freedom you are giving up is all in the great name of public safety. Still a many others feel that they are witnessing an Orwellian 1984 happening right in our very neighborhoods. Almost every resident around Susan B Anthony Elementary was on their front porch to witness this training and calibration, and about 20 activists and concerned citizens were there to film and document the events. The outcry was rather significant. The police however, never ceased. They just keep doing their job.