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Reveal: Guns and America’s Murder Board

In Featured, Reveal

By Julia B. Chan, Reveal

On this hour of Reveal, we take a look at the toll of gun violence in the country, who’s documenting the carnage and how lives can be saved.

We start in New Orleans, where Father Bill Terry has been publicly documenting the names of men and women slain in the city on what he calls a “murder board,” which hangs on the exterior wall of his church. He talks to host Al Letson about how the memorial came to be and the gravity behind this long list of names.

Image: Every few weeks, Father Bill Terry adds names to what he calls the “murder board” it’s a list he’s been keeping since 2007 of all the people who’ve been slain in New Orleans. CREDIT: Anna Vignet for Reveal

Next, reporter Michael Montgomery meets a man who stands on both sides of the gun debate – an enthusiast who’s also building a database of every incident of gun violence in the country.  His research is challenging some of the core claims of the gun rights movement.

Then we head to San Francisco to check out a high-tech system that police departments across the country are using to help stop crime. It listens for gunshots, then directs police to the scene. But officers rarely end up making arrests, and some agencies question whether the technology is worth the expense.

Next, we take a look at how data is used to target young men most likely to shoot someone or get shot – but not for what you think. Sukey Lewis of KQED brings us this story from Richmond, California.

Finally, we revisit Terry in New Orleans, who in addition to memorializing the victims of crime in his community has created a program to steer the youngest generation away from guns and violence.

Reveal is a weekly radio program produced by The Center for Investigative Reporting and PRX. For more, check out our website and subscribe to our podcast