Sunday, October 09, 2005

St. Louis Police Pass 100 'Hit' Milestone Using ATF's New Ballistic Technology

ST. LOUIS, Oct. 7 /PRNewswire/ -- The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearmsand Explosives (ATF) announced today that Chief Joseph J. Mokwa and the St.Louis Metropolitan Police Department have been recognized for exceeding 100"hits" in their use of ATF's computerized ballistic imaging system. ATF Assistant Special Agent in Charge Jeffrey Fulton of the St. LouisField Office, Kansas City Field Division, said the Firearm and ToolmarkIdentification Section of the department's Laboratory Identification Divisionachieved the distinction. "The St. Louis police have been the kind of modelNIBIN user that ATF hopes to duplicate throughout the country," Fulton said.

ATF's National Integrated Ballistic Information Network (NIBIN) is acomputerized ballistic imaging system that uses Integrated BallisticsIdentification System (IBIS) technology to allow firearms technicians andexaminers to acquire, digitize, and compare unique markings made by a firearmon bullets and cartridge casings. ATF currently deploys NIBIN at 228 federal,state and local law enforcement agencies and forensic laboratories. NIBIN enables the agencies to discover links between evidence frommultiple crime scenes more quickly and to discover links that would not bemade without the technology. Through July 2005, NIBIN partner agencies have imaged more than 890,000pieces of ballistic evidence into the database and have linked more than23,600 crime scenes. St. Louis joins 36 other cities that have had over 100"hits" on the system.

Mokwa and Fulton both thanked the St. Louis police laboratory personnelfor their tireless efforts in making NIBIN successful and productive in St.Louis. "It still takes old fashioned police work to investigate, solve andprosecute these cases, but the NIBIN program has provided essential linksbetween seemingly unrelated shooting scenes, and in some cases, has providednew investigative leads," Mokwa said.


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