Knife and Threat Detectors

by   David A. Noever, et al.

Despite rapid advances in image-based machine learning, the threat identification of a knife wielding attacker has not garnered substantial academic attention. This relative research gap appears less understandable given the high knife assault rate (>100,000 annually) and the increasing availability of public video surveillance to analyze and forensically document. We present three complementary methods for scoring automated threat identification using multiple knife image datasets, each with the goal of narrowing down possible assault intentions while minimizing misidentifying false positives and risky false negatives. To alert an observer to the knife-wielding threat, we test and deploy classification built around MobileNet in a sparse and pruned neural network with a small memory requirement (< 2.2 megabytes) and 95 (MaskRCNN) to segment the hand from the knife in a single image and assign probable certainty to their relative location. This segmentation accomplishes both localization with bounding boxes but also relative positions to infer overhand threats. A final model built on the PoseNet architecture assigns anatomical waypoints or skeletal features to narrow the threat characteristics and reduce misunderstood intentions. We further identify and supplement existing data gaps that might blind a deployed knife threat detector such as collecting innocuous hand and fist images as important negative training sets. When automated on commodity hardware and software solutions one original research contribution is this systematic survey of timely and readily available image-based alerts to task and prioritize crime prevention countermeasures prior to a tragic outcome.


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