Enlarge / As seen in 2006, DC cops are using a new tool in fighting crime: the ShotSpotter, which uses highly sophisticated microphones to detect the sound of gunshots and send a signal to dispatchers. (credit: Michael Robinson-Chavez/The Washington Post/Getty Images)
With the president at Camp David for most of the weekend, the United States Secret Service decided that now would be a good time to fire off a few live rounds on the grounds of the White House—so it can evaluate a gunshot-detection technology known as ShotSpotter.
The mounted microphone and computer system is designed to detect gunshots via their audio signature and send prompt alerts to local authorities.
In a series of tweets on Saturday morning, the CEO of ShotSpotter, Ralph Clark, said that 90 cities and 30 university campuses currently use it, including recent additions in Louisville, Kentucky, and Cincinnati, Ohio.

The system has been in use by the Metropolitan Police Department—which serves the city of Washington, DC—for many years.
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