Media Outlets Are Retracting ShotSpotter Stories Based Around ‘False Claim’ Reported by Vice
The Associated Press joins a handful of other media outlets that are backing away from the accusation that ShotSpotter, at the request of police, changed the coordinates of a gunfire incident.
FREMONT, Calif. — ShotSpotter, Inc. (Nasdaq: SSTI), a provider of policing technology solutions that are said to enable law enforcement to more effectively respond to, investigate and deter crime, announces that the Associated Press has joined a growing list of media outlets that have retracted, corrected or clarified their reporting of a demonstrably false claim that was originally published by Vice Media.
The global news organization also corrected its reporting to explain that a ShotSpotter forensic report was in fact admissible as evidence in a 2014 California case. After correcting its reporting, the Associated Press notified all publishers who had originally received the uncorrected article.
The Associated Press joined the Daily Mail, The Register, the University of Illinois at Chicago Law Review, Data Science Central and the tech publication Hot Hardware in backing away from the accusation, which ShotSpotter says is demonstrably false, that, at the request of police, ShotSpotter changed the coordinates of gunfire to an intersection where the car of Chicago’s Michael Williams had been seen as Vice had previously claimed.
As the court records demonstrate, the company’s real-time alert from the night of the shooting and its later detailed forensic report both included GPS coordinates and maps placing the gunfire at the exact same intersection (see image below).
In a March 7 court filing, ShotSpotter legal counsel Megan L. Meier told the Court, “Vice launched the viral lie that ShotSpotter had conspired with police to frame people. That lie was taken as fact by other media outlets and quickly spread through social media and respected civil rights and criminal justice organizations, undermining the trust that ShotSpotter has earned over the past 25 years.”
“VICE grossly misrepresented how ShotSpotter carefully and faithfully prepares court-admissible forensic evidence and expert witness testimony for criminal shooting proceedings,” says Ralph Clark, president and CEO of ShotSpotter. “I’m glad publishers have made the effort to review the court records for themselves.”
Last October, ShotSpotter filed a $300 million lawsuit in Delaware Superior Court against Vice Media over defamatory and false statements made against the company’s gunshot detection technology.
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