Leaders hope to implement gunshot detecting system in Myrtle Beach schools

Published: Jun. 28, 2022 at 1:44 PM EDT|Updated: Jun. 28, 2022 at 7:30 PM EDT
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MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. (WMBF) – A new system that can detect gunshots could soon be implemented in Myrtle Beach schools.

The Myrtle Beach City Council approved a motion that authorizes the city manager to apply for a $265,000 grant to improve the security on school grounds.

With the money, leaders hope to acquire a system called Acoustic Threat Detection which protects public spaces with its ability to detect gunshots. When a gunshot is heard, the technology locates and detects the threat and alerts law enforcement to an active shooter, which allows for an immediate response to schools.

“This program is just another effort for the mass shootings that have occurred all over the United States,” said Myrtle Beach Police Chief Amy Prock.

School security and safety have been a major issue over the past month following the school shooting that left 19 students and two teachers dead at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas.

RELATED COVERAGE | Justice Dept. to start Uvalde school shooting investigation

The Justice Department announced on Tuesday that its critical incident review team will have its first on-site visit to the elementary school this week.

If the city of Myrtle Beach acquires the Acoustic Threat Detection, it will be installed at Myrtle Beach High, Myrtle Beach Middle, Myrtle Beach Elementary and Myrtle Beach Primary schools.

“It’s very important for the city to do what we can,” said Myrtle Beach Mayor Brenda Bethune. “Even though we don’t have a lot of say so when it comes to school safety and that is why we need our Horry County Council. We need our school board. We need our state. We need everybody coming to the table together because the violence in our schools has to stop. We have to do more to protect our children and that’s what this technology is. It’s something we can do on a city level to make our schools more safe.”

Jackie Graham, a mother of two, said that sending her kids to school is terrifying.

“With Uvalde, Sandy Hook, Parkland,” Graham listed. “All of them. It’s terrifying. I am personally a mother and I’m afraid to put my children in any sort of public school.”

Graham said she’s happy to see some steps being taken for the safety of the children in Myrtle Beach, but she still worried.

“I feel like that was very important, but I also feel like as seen in the Uvalde shooting, where the cops did nothing,” Graham said. “I feel like it’s important for our cops to make sure that they are taking the measures to be as active as possible. As they saw, you’re putting yourself in that situation and that is the job you took and you should be able to go in and take action at any point in time.”

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