Chicago Police have said one of their focuses in fighting crime this year will be in better using technology, including shot sensors and  shell case tracing to catch shooters fast.

“We know there are plans in the works to increase federal resources to Chicago,” he said. “We hope it will help us build a machine to investigate and prosecute gun cases more effectively.”

Brian Garner, and ATF spokesman, declined to confirm the details of the Chicago plan, and stressed that nothing has been finalized.

“ATF is exploring various options as we are committed to furthering law enforcement efforts in Chicago,” he said. “One of those options is to send additional agents to Chicago on permanent transfers.”

Darrel Stephens, executive director of the Major Cities Chiefs Association, said the plan as described in the memo is sensible. He said combining intelligence operations with enforcement groups may help agents and police track down criminals faster. That’s especially important in Chicago, where a large number of crimes are acts of retaliation. If agents or police can track down a shooter in time to stop the retaliation against that person, they could stop a significant number of crimes, Stephens said.

“If the crime involves gangs, it’s wise not only to focus on trigger pullers, but also on preventing retaliation against them” he said.

Chicago made more headlines for violence than any other city last year. But when homicide is measured on a per-capita basis, St. Louis has the highest homicide rate — nearly double that of Chicago’s. Baltimore is second, followed by Detroit, New Orleans, and Cleveland.