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Thread: Ballistic Identification System database

  1. #1
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    http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn...092900035.html

    New York Defends Handgun Database

    By Michael Hill

    Associated Press
    Monday, September 29, 2008; Page A03




    ALBANY, N.Y. -- New York's seven-year-old database of handgun "fingerprints" has yet to lead to a criminal prosecution, and questions linger about its effectiveness. Still, state police remain committed to the tool, saying that more time and a long-awaited link to a federal ballistics database could bring success.


    Since March 2001, identifying information about more than 200,000 new revolvers and semiautomatic pistols sold in New York have been entered into the Combined Ballistic Identification System database maintained by state police. New York and Maryland are the only states that maintain statewide databases.

    New guns are test-fired, and the minute markings the weapons make on the shell casings are recorded and entered into the digital database.

    Proponents say the markings are as unique as fingerprints and can be compared against shell casings found at crime scenes. The results as of August: 209,239 casings entered into New York's database, 7,124 inquiries and two hits.

    Both hits were several years ago and involve separate crimes in Rochester -- a drive-by shooting that resulted in an injury and an incident involving shots fired -- and neither resulted in a prosecution, according to state and local police.

    Gun advocates, who have opposed the database from the get-go as unworkable, claim the lack of results is evidence of the system's failure. They contend that a firearm's "fingerprints" can be changed easily by taking a file to the breech face. Tom King, president of the New York State Rifle & Pistol Association, said the state would be better served by spending the money for the database -- which police say costs about $1 million a year -- on more police.

    "We don't have to be throwing millions of dollars into a program that doesn't work," he said.

    State police disagree. A spokesman, Sgt. Kern Swoboda, noted that the typical time between the legal purchase of a gun and the time it is used in a crime is seven to 10 years. That would mean that the first guns logged in 2001 are just now becoming more likely to be used in crimes, and that matches could start coming in the next several years.

    The federal government keeps its own ballistics database, the National Integrated Ballistic Information Network. The national database is different from New York's in that it collects information on guns used in crimes, as opposed to new firearms. But it is technically possible to compare entries in the two databases.

    For years, New York officials have been trying to secure an agreement with federal officials to link to the national database, but it has proved difficult because that database may contain only ballistic information from crime guns.

    The federal database has been credited with nearly 25,000 hits, many of them yielding investigative information.

  2. #2
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    What's the definition of insanity?

  3. #3
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    Security theater

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    Regular Member zoom6zoom's Avatar
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    What? On CSI they use it to solve six crimes a week! You telling me that Hollywood, the media, and Horatio Cane are lying to me about guns?

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    I was just about to post this article...

    Ridiculous. Utterly ridiculous. And I have the odd feeling that taxes and fees on gun owners will be used to make up the difference in funding to pay for the bloated system.

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    I'm going to lol pretty hard the first time a criminal is smart enough to scattera couple fist-fullsof random shells from the range all over the crime scene.

    The measure is moronic. Since when do criminals purchase guns legally?

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    Can you imagine....

    Hitting a gun range in that state and grabbing some shells off the floor.

    Then drop them at the scene of the crime....

    In a way the shell casings can provide direction if they are logged. But criminals buying gun out of state really make this program useless.

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    Yep, throwing good money at bad money.

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    Campaign Veteran deepdiver's Avatar
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    LEO 229 wrote:
    Still, state police remain committed to the tool ...
    I'm confused. Are they talking about Bloomberg or Obama? It's sad when you can't figure out which gun grabbing tool is being referenced in a news article.

    As to the ballistic identification system database, I see it as just more 1984 applications of technology. Government will become progressively bigger and more invasive unless its power is checked by the people.
    Bob Owens @ Bearing Arms (paraphrased): "These people aren't against violence; they're very much in favor of violence. They're against armed resistance."

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    or what about the sig p250.. are they going to test that one with all the caliber variations prior to sale? or if i plug my p220 with a .357 sig set up.

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    Regular Member MetalChris's Avatar
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    deepdiver wrote:
    LEO 229 wrote:
    Still, state police remain committed to the tool ...
    I'm confused. Are they talking about Bloomberg or Obama? It's sad when you can't figure out which gun grabbing tool is being referenced in a news article.


    That, my friend, was funny.

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    LEO 229 wrote:
    State police disagree. A spokesman, Sgt. Kern Swoboda, noted that the typical time between the legal purchase of a gun and the time it is used in a crime is seven to 10 years. That would mean that the first guns logged in 2001 are just now becoming more likely to be used in crimes, and that matches could start coming in the next several years.
    Unless the gun just sits around until it's used in a crime, in seven to ten years the ballistic fingerprints are not going to be close to what is on file.

    Does anyone know how many shots it takes to change them enough to be unusable? I'd guess on a new handgun, after about a hundred or so (which is nothing), it looks like a completely different gun. I'd like to know for sure though, if anyone has any data on that.

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    If it takes about 7 years before a gun is used in a crime..... The gun could have been sold privately several times or even stolen.

    This data is going to be useless since the person in possession will likely NOT be known in most cases.

    I see this as a waste of money.

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    MetalChris wrote:
    deepdiver wrote:
    LEO 229 wrote:
    Still, state police remain committed to the tool ...
    I'm confused. Are they talking about Bloomberg or Obama? It's sad when you can't figure out which gun grabbing tool is being referenced in a news article.


    That, my friend, was funny.
    I second that....always nice to find humor in truth....nice one DD

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    Speaking of Rochester, the city recently had a gun buy back drive to take guns off the streets using funds from confiscated assests. Out of the several hundred gun turned in, only 2 were the dreaded "assault weapons". It seems none of these great programs work at removing these plagues from society. :P

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    Regular Member Sig229's Avatar
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    The communist state of Maryland put one of these databases in around 2000 and from my research it has not solved 1 crime since its inception.

    I believe the former State Police chief even called it a "waste of time, money and resources"
    "Let your gun be your constant companion during your walks" ~Thomas Jefferson

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    For a hi-frealing-larious takedown of this "ballistic fingerprinting " crap (bullets got fingers??) see :

    http://www.anesi.com/bulletmania.htm

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