Wisconsin woman creates gunshot alarm system

BARABOO, Wis. (AP) — The deadly 2012 shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School inspired a Wisconsin woman to create a gunshot alarm system that alerts those in a building to the sound of gunfire and notifies emergency responders.

Stacy Jax tested the Trinity Gunshot Alarm System last week at an indoor shooting range with Sauk County Sheriff's Department Sgt. James Hodges, the Baraboo News Republic reported .

The system is similar to a fire alarm. Sensors placed in a building will set off an alarm when they detect and confirm the sound of a gunshot. The sensors can also help authorities by pinpointing the location of the shot.

"It isn't political in nature, it's just an alarm system," Jax said. "It's helpful, and I think it's one part of a very complex system that has to be integrated."

The alarm system could help school staff confirm that a noise is actually a gunshot and speed up response times.

"It would be like having smoke in a room, but you don't know it's smoke," Hodges said. "That's eating up precious time that a person could use to take some sort of action that's necessary to get themselves safe, or to get first responders to the scene."

Jax is a former substitute teacher for the Baraboo School District. She began working on the idea with software development company Acumium in February 2016.

"Years ago I was praying for the victims of Sandy Hook and going through solutions in my mind," Jax said. "I thought, what if you could create a fire alarm that listens for sound and then put out a notification on top of that?"

Jax next plans to secure additional funding to create a five-sensor system, which she hopes to test in May.

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