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Ballistic "Fingerprinting" Study Bill Introduced

Friday, June 13, 2003

Law enforcement uses existing ballistic imaging technology in criminal investigations all across the nation. The science is very effective at examining evidence left at crime scenes and matching it with firearms collected from suspected criminals. The ballistic "fingerprinting" scheme that is now being proposed by the anti-gunners has nothing to do with that activity. What is being promoted now is a much broader program that will serve as firearm registration for guns owned by law-abiding citizens.

Gun-prohibitionists have latched onto ballistic "fingerprinting" and have used tragedies and horrific crimes (including last year`s D.C.-area sniper shootings) to promote it, but they have failed to show that ballistic "fingerprinting" would be anything more than an expensive firearm registration scheme. Proponents of ballistic "fingerprinting" insist on rushing forward with a program without any knowledge as to its costs, effectiveness, or feasibility. This is clear evidence that they are more interested in the one sure effect of the program-a de facto gun registration system-than they are in actually helping law enforcement solve crimes. Gun prohibitionists have failed repeatedly to convince Congress to support their calls for a national gun registry, and they see ballistic "fingerprinting" as the best way to surreptitiously pass a gun registration bill. Along with NRA, the Fraternal Order of Police has definite reservations about this concept.

Senators Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) and Zell Miller (D-Ga.) have joined together to introduce S. 980, legislation that would: mandate a comprehensive study of ballistic imaging technology, determine the effectiveness of ballistic imaging database as an investigative tool for law enforcement, and establish the cost and effectiveness of state-based imaging systems. The bill specifically requires that the study examine a number of important questions regarding any ballistic imaging system.

For more information on this bill, call ILA Grassroots at (800) 392-8683 or click here.

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Established in 1975, the Institute for Legislative Action (ILA) is the "lobbying" arm of the National Rifle Association of America. ILA is responsible for preserving the right of all law-abiding individuals in the legislative, political, and legal arenas, to purchase, possess and use firearms for legitimate purposes as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.