Predictive Policing Blog

PredPol Launches First-Of-Its-Kind Technology to Predict Gun Violence

Posted on Jul 24, 2013 4:29:00 PM in Gun Violence, Predictive Policing, PredPol, Customer Success

PredPol, the Predictive Policing Company, has developed and is deploying first-of-its-kind technology to help police predict and deter gun violence.

 “We are pleased to be working with innovative leaders in our partner cities,” said Dr. George Mohler, PredPol co-founder and professor of mathematics and computer science at Santa Clara University.  “While no single strategy can end gun violence, predictive policing gives officers a significantly better idea of when and where to be so that they can deter crime generally, and gun violence in particular.  If we can prevent just one gun crime, that will mean one less neighbor, friend, or family member who becomes a victim.”

PredPol’s unique gun violence prediction methodology leverages existing crime data that every city already has, advanced mathematics developed over more than six years, computer learning, cloud computing, and the indispensable experience of veteran police.  The crime data is analyzed through a sophisticated algorithm that applies proven criminal theories about crime in general and gun violence in particular.  The results are more accurate and more actionable recommendations for when and where gun violence is most likely to occur, thus allowing police to show up before  crime happens.

PredPol has extensively modeled this new approach to deterring gun violence, predicting a greater number of gun homicides compared with existing approaches, including traditional hotspot maps. PredPol successfully outperforms current best practices by 66%.

This corresponds with even stronger performance that police agencies have seen with PredPol’s broader technology for predicting and preventing other violent crimes and property offenses.  In deployments to patrol officers in cities like Los Angeles and Kent, England, PredPol’s predictions not only reduced crime but were 100% more  accurate than existing best practices – predicting double the number of crimes as current crime mapping and hotspot analysis.

PredPol has already deployed its broad crime prediction tool for less violent crimes and for property offenses in cities like Los Angeles and Santa Cruz in California, South Carolina’s capital city of Columbia, Seattle and Tacoma in Washington, and in Kent, England.  The gun violence prediction technology is part of this broader predictive policing technology package.

“We understand the challenges faced by city leaders and law enforcement and created this technology with police to help them do more with less,” said Dr. Jeff Brantingham, co-founder of PredPol and a criminology expert at UCLA. “Affordable, easy to use technologies allow police who have tight budgets and limited hiring ability to better direct the patrol resources they have.”