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Thread: Ballistics tracking urged to ID guns

  1. #1
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    http://www.washtimes.com/news/2008/oct/02/ballistics-tracking-urged-to-id-guns/
    Ballistics tracking urged to ID guns
    Lanier demurs on microstamps
    Christopher Shaver THE WASHINGTON TIMES
    Thursday, October 2, 2008
    A gun-control advocate told the D.C. Council's public safety committee Wednesday that officials should consider adopting a complex method of ballistics tracking to help identify guns used in the city.

    "In crime scenes, what we find are cartridges and no guns," said Joshua Horwitz, executive director of the Educational Fund to Stop Gun Violence. "Microstamping can provide the link between the gun and cartridge."

    Mr. Horwitz's comments came during a hearing before the council's Committee on Public Safety and the Judiciary regarding gun laws in the District.

    Temporary legislation passed by the council last month aims to comply with a U.S. Supreme Court ruling earlier this year that struck down the District's handgun ban. The bill will be in effect for 225 days while the council considers permanent legislation.

    Microstamping is a process by which a microscopic marking is transferred from the firearm to a cartridge when a gun is fired.

    During Wednesday's hearing, Mr. Horwitz said the stamp could then be matched to a manufacturer and the cartridge traced back to the person who bought the weapon.

    In California, microstamping of all new models of semiautomatic handguns will be required by 2010. But Metropolitan Police Chief Cathy L. Lanier, who also testified at the hearing, said she isn't sold on the practice.

    The chief said she would like to strengthen gun laws by educating potential gun owners with a video and having gun owners re-register their weapons every five years.

    "More research should be done before [microstamping is] considered," Chief Lanier said.

    D.C. residents currently must register their firearms.

    Under the city's new law, weapons that can fire more than 12 rounds without being reloaded are no longer considered machine guns. The previous definition effectively banned all semiautomatic weapons because magazines of virtually any capacity theoretically can be designed for them.

    However, the law still caps magazine capacity at 10 rounds in an effort to ensure that police have more firepower than criminals. Those who wish to purchase guns manufactured to hold more rounds would have to buy magazines modified to hold no more than 10.

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    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.

    http://opencarry.mywowbb.com/view_to...mp;forum_id=65


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    Regular Member Sonora Rebel's Avatar
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    First of all there's no guarantee that any gun used in a crime in DC orginated in DC. Odds are nil. Gun Registration is illegal anyway. Revolvers don't leave brass.... so that excludes a whole segment. All breeches, extractors and firing pins leave identifiable 'tool marks'on brass now.

    'Shall not be infringed!" HELLO?

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    What would prevent a would be criminal from grinding the microstamp off or just replacing the whole barrel?

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    Regular Member Sonora Rebel's Avatar
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    Nothing.

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    So this means that the responsible and legal citizen will incur the costs of manufacturing new weapons capable of microstamp technology so that a weapon can be traced? And yet a criminal can easily defeat the technology.



    Makes perfect sense to me.

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    And yet another case of:

    "Gee, I am so glad that we CAN do that!"

    But, they didn't ask SHOULD we do that?

    Joe Sparky

    Yes, it was a great line in the movie "Jurasic Park" by the character portrayed by Jeff Goldbloom (sp)....

    "They we so excited that they COULD do it they didn't ask if they SHOULD do it."
    RIGHTS don't exist without RESPONSIBILITY!
    If one is not willing to stand for his rights, he doesn't have any Rights.
    I will strive to stand for the rights of ANY person, even those folks with whom I disagree!
    As said by SVG--- "I am not anti-COP, I am PRO-Citizen" and I'll add, PRO-Constitution.
    If the above makes me a RADICAL or EXTREME--- So be it!

    Life Member NRA
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    2nd amendment says.... "...The right of the people to keep and bear arms SHALL NOT BE INFRINGED!"

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    State Researcher HankT's Avatar
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    LEO 229 wrote:
    Microstamping is a process by which a microscopic marking is transferred from the firearm to a cartridge when a gun is fired.

    During Wednesday's hearing, Mr. Horwitz said the stamp could then be matched to a manufacturer and the cartridge traced back to the person who bought the weapon.

    In California, microstamping of all new models of semiautomatic handguns will be required by 2010. But Metropolitan Police Chief Cathy L. Lanier, who also testified at the hearing, said she isn't sold on the practice.

    The chief said she would like to strengthen gun laws by educating potential gun owners with a video and having gun owners re-register their weapons every five years.

    "More research should be done before [microstamping is] considered," Chief Lanier said.
    I dunno. I'm thinking about the concept of microstamping. My main objections to it would be any demands to retrofit my currently owned guns and what the cost increaseper new gun relative to any benefits derived from the new technology.

    It isn't feasible, I don't think, to retrofit 220 to 270 million existing legally owned guns with microstamping technology. And it would take many decades for the benefits of imposing the technology on new guns only to offset the additional hardware costs.

    OTOH, I see gun owner benefits from having microstamping on any new guns I would buy if, and only if, the technology worked as theorized.

    But the cost factor is pretty big, I think. Maybe that's something that the government could do: subsidize the incremental cost increase on all new guns. On a long run cost basis it might be, say, $25 to $30per gun. At about 3 million new guns a year being introduced into the system that'd be less than $100 million a year. Chump change, the way the feds are slinginng money around lately...

    I can definitely say this: If, at some point in the future, I could go to my local federally licensed gun shop and see two GLOCK 29 pistols, side by side, one with the microstamping tech (which works as theorized) andone without the microstamping and they were both priced at $500 plus tax, plus NICS call-in....

    I would choose the G29 with the microstamping technology.

    It would be a no-brainer.

    Looks like some good improvements in the goofy D.C. laws, otherwise. It's too bad those kooks have to be dragged kicking and screaming into the post-Heller age.

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    State Researcher HankT's Avatar
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    JoeSparky wrote:
    And yet another case of:

    "Gee, I am so glad that we CAN do that!"

    But, they didn't ask SHOULD we do that?

    Joe Sparky

    Yes, it was a great line in the movie "Jurasic Park" by the character portrayed by Jeff Goldbloom (sp)....

    "They we so excited that they COULD do it they didn't ask if they SHOULD do it."
    Just because we haven't done it doesn't mean we shouldn't do it.

    People have objected to all kinds of innovations (telephone, flight, television, talking motion pictures, etc.) that turned out to be quite beneficial.

  10. #10
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    HankT wrote:
    JoeSparky wrote:
    And yet another case of:

    "Gee, I am so glad that we CAN do that!"

    But, they didn't ask SHOULD we do that?

    Joe Sparky

    Yes, it was a great line in the movie "Jurasic Park" by the character portrayed by Jeff Goldbloom (sp)....

    "They we so excited that they COULD do it they didn't ask if they SHOULD do it."
    Just because we haven't done it doesn't mean we shouldn't do it.

    People have objected to all kinds of innovations (telephone, flight, television, talking motion pictures, etc.) that turned out to be quite beneficial.
    And we should NOT do it until and If the technology exists to make the microstamping permenant (AS in does not change after cleaning, changing barrel, firing a few rounds thru the gun.)

    On one of the associated threads New York, I think, has been collecting "gun fingerprinting" data and to date has ZERO matches/prosecutions for the last 7 years of collecting data!

    JoeSparky
    RIGHTS don't exist without RESPONSIBILITY!
    If one is not willing to stand for his rights, he doesn't have any Rights.
    I will strive to stand for the rights of ANY person, even those folks with whom I disagree!
    As said by SVG--- "I am not anti-COP, I am PRO-Citizen" and I'll add, PRO-Constitution.
    If the above makes me a RADICAL or EXTREME--- So be it!

    Life Member NRA
    Life Member GOA
    2nd amendment says.... "...The right of the people to keep and bear arms SHALL NOT BE INFRINGED!"

  11. #11
    Regular Member Sonora Rebel's Avatar
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    The actual ... objective purpose is to make gun ownership more difficult... not for any other high-minded purpose. All ammo is mfg with LOT Numbers to track the possible defects as they may occurand shelf life. If they really wanted to do ANYTHING beneficial to law enforcement... ammo could be mfg with tagant propellants or metallurgical core identities within the rounds themselves identifiable by forensics to that Lot Number. This could be 'tracked' to specific areas where such Lots were distributed for sale. Further... such lots could be 'bought' on signature from the buyer. This would indicate who bought what and where. Additionally... the actual serial umber of the gun(s) in which the ammo is to be used could then be recorded. I find that odious... but a possibility. It would then narrow the 'field' to all purchasers... but not the individual 'gun'. That would be determined thru ballistic/forensic testing of the weapon. That would mean... ALL weapons. Cost and time prohibitive to be sure.

    If the 'who' is a BG... that would narrow the field. Of course... straw purchases of ammo or stolen ammo would confuse that scenario. Stolen weapons w/micro-stamping would also be of little use.

    Shotgun ammo and .22 shorts also leave little in the way of 'rifleing' ID. Spent cartridges all have distinguishable 'tool marks' left by firing pin indentations, extractor and chambering marks etc. It still comes down to actual 'identity' of which weapon was used... and who pulled the trigger in criminal use.

    As it is... guns stolen... even wth those whom the owners idenitify by Serial Number... with photographs are rarely recovered, much less returned to the rightful owner. This whole idea is an exercise in futility.

    I have a friend who was contacted by the FBI this year tho... for a .380acp Makarov barrel he bought from a catalog outfit 15 years ago. The company has since gone out of business. Such a weapon was used in a high profile murder in California some years ago. Well... his name was on a list of some 300 or so people who bought such barrels. He never installed them... 'Dug around in his junk box 'n found them (one blue and one stainless)... used an etching tool to put his name on them and then an indelible marker within the etching. He sent 'em to the FBI. He really doesn't care if he get's 'em back or not. Had this not been a high profile hit... it's doubtful such an in-depth investigation would occur. Given the fact that the weapon could be purchased for about $150. at the time... it's prob'ly been disassembled 'n tossed off a bridge or a boat long ago after serving it's criminal purpose.

    Again... what 'they' tell you this idea is about is NOT what it's about. It's about CONTROL and RESTRICTION.





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