NEW ORLEANS — One year ago today Adam Ross, the brother of Bounce star Big Freedia, was murdered in Central City. On the anniversary of his death, Project NOLA announced that it has installed its first crime camera that can also detect gunshots near the murder scene.
The camera cost about $400 and was paid for by a donation from Big Freedia herself.
Project NOLA Director Bryan Lagarde says that the camera can tilt and pan to record video. It also has a sensor on it that will alert workers at the Project NOLA headquarters when a gun is fired. The camera can then scan the scene or be programmed to focus directly upon a preprogrammed location, usually a neighborhood hot spot with a history of criminal activity.
Lagarde says that the program has about six more of the cameras that are ready to be installed. Most of them are already allocated to certain locations. But Lagarde is hoping more people will come forward with donations to allow the purchase of even more of the cameras.
Project NOLA already operates more than 2,500 crime cameras in New Orleans. A few could be retrofitted to use the gunshot detection devices. But Lagarde says it would be more reasonable to install the devices with new cameras.
While this is the first Project NOLA camera with the gunshot sensing capability to be installed in New Orleans, the group has been testing them for a while in Natchez, Mississippi, where they successfully detected a gunshot and allowed workers to contact the police department as recently as yesterday.