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Axon releases Draft One, AI-powered report-writing software

“Harnessing the power of AI will prove to be one of the most impactful technological advancements of our time to help scale police work,” said Axon founder Rick Smith

By Police1 Staff

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. — Axon has announced the release of Draft One, a new software product that drafts police report narratives in seconds based on auto-transcribed body-worn camera audio, according to a press release.

Reporting is a critical component of good police work, however, it has become a significant part of the job. Axon found that every week officers in the U.S. can spend up to 40% of their time — or 15 hours per week — on what is essentially data entry.

“Every single officer in the U.S. writes police reports, often every day and normally multiple times a day,” said Axon CEO and Founder Rick Smith. “As we’ve done with Draft One, harnessing the power of AI will prove to be one of the most impactful technological advancements of our time to help scale police work and revolutionize the way public safety operates.”

Audio from Axon Body 3 and 4 (BWC) camera footage is uploaded over LTE and transcribed automatically leveraging Generative Artificial Intelligence (AI), so report drafts are available within five minutes of an incident ending.

Axon conducted a double-blind study to compare the quality between report narratives written with Draft One and those without. Results showed that Draft One performed equal to or better than officer-only report narratives across five dimensions, including completeness, neutrality, objectivity, terminology and coherence. Learn more about the study, which was conducted with 24 independent experts, including district attorneys, field operations command staff and inclusion scholars.

Agency trials have resulted in roughly one hour of time saved per day on paperwork. For every eight officers who use Draft One during their day, that translates to an extra eight-hour shift or more.

“With over 27 years of experience in law enforcement, I have seen technology come and go, but Draft One is one of the most exciting innovations for law enforcement I have ever seen,” said Fort Collins Colorado Police Services Sergeant Robert Younger. “Our agency has been testing Draft One, and we have seen an 82% decrease in time spent writing reports. Testing Officers have also shared that the quality of their reports has improved substantially, with Draft One including statements and actions that could have easily been overlooked or missed if done manually. Draft One has exceeded our expectations and will be a huge asset to our agency.”

Draft One includes a range of strict safeguards requiring that humans make the decisions in key moments:

  • Officer required to review and sign off: Once the report narrative has been edited and key information has been added, officers are required to sign off on the report’s accuracy before submitting for the next round of human review.
  • Adheres to the audio data: Report narratives are drafted strictly from the audio transcript from the body-worn camera recording. Axon calibrated the underlying model for Draft One to prevent speculation or embellishments.
  • Controls to ensure proofreading: Each draft includes placeholders that officers are required to edit, by either adding more information or removing the placeholder.
  • Report drafts are restricted to minor incidents and charges: The default experience limits report drafts to minor incident types and charge levels, specifically excluding incidents where arrests took place and for felonies. With this default, agencies can get started with Draft One and gain tremendous value in expediting report writing for the overwhelming majority of reports officers submit. This allows agencies the option to gain experience on low-severity reports first, then expand to more severe reports once they gain experience in how to use the tool effectively. Agencies can set a policy determining which reports are eligible for Draft One utilization, and the tool then ensures enforcement of the agency policy.

Draft One is available today in the U.S. as part of the Axon ecosystem and works for Axon body-worn camera and Axon Evidence customers, with even easier and more seamless insertion into Axon Records incident reports. For agencies not yet using Axon Records, the generated reports can be easily inserted into their current RMS. Data is always secured within the Axon network, where transcripts and reports maintain agency security controls. Axon unveiled this latest technology innovation at its leading public safety technology and training conference, Axon Week. To learn more about the news announced at Axon Week, see Axon’s blog.