An AI-driven firearm detection system was activated at the Michigan State Capitol on Monday as part of ongoing efforts to reinforce safety measures within Lansing’s legislative establishments.
This deployment marks the inaugural implementation of the software, named ZeroEyes, within a state capitol building.
Rob Blackshaw, the executive director of the Michigan State Capitol Commission, emphasized the importance of vigilance in the current political climate. He highlighted the Capitol’s commitment to maintaining a secure environment, asserting that ZeroEyes significantly contributes to ensuring safety with its advanced technology and skilled personnel.
ZeroEyes, designed to complement the existing Capitol security, facilitates the sharing of identified firearm images if detected. Upon identification, images are relayed to ZeroEyes’ operational center. The staff, composed of former U.S. military or law enforcement veterans, promptly notifies police within and beyond Capitol premises if the threat is confirmed.
Mike Lahiff, CEO and co-founder of ZeroEyes, praised the Capitol’s commitment to safety amidst escalating political violence. He expressed pride in ZeroEyes’ selection to enhance security within the historically significant building.
Earlier this year, the commission authorized a complete firearms ban at the Capitol Building while allowing specific exemptions, including law enforcement and sitting lawmakers with valid Concealed Pistol Licenses. Additionally, pass-through weapon detection towers were approved at four entrances, scanning for guns and 3-D printed weapons like knives or hammers.
Open carry has been entirely prohibited in public areas within the Michigan State Capitol Building since 2021, a decision made after armed individuals, some later implicated in a plot to abduct Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, entered the Capitol during an April 2020 rally. However, open and concealed carry on the Capitol lawn remains permissible.