5/16/2008

Firearms Microstamping: They pass these laws without adequately studying them?

Science Daily has an interesting report on microstamping (putting an identifying mark on ammunition fired from a gun). There are many issues that were not addressed by the report. For example, what is the actual benefit from such markings? It is one thing to be able to sometimes read these markings. It is quite another that they actually catch criminals in real life use. The report has some interesting notes such as this:

Codes engraved on the face of the firing pin could easily be removed with household tools, Beddow found.

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4 Comments:

Anonymous Harry Schell said...

The CA law was passed over the objections of a UC Davis study commissioned by the Legislature which noted the ease the system could be defeated, unreliability and immaturity of the technology.

There was a lot of discussion about all the other deficiencies in the whole concept in the news media and in debate, but the measure passed and the Governor, with no change of circumstances, signed it after vetoing it in prior years.

Similar malfeasance has gone on with laws setting time periods to report stolen guns. The Sacramento City Council paid for a study of the impact of such law in some neighboring cities, such as Oakland. That there had been not a single prosecution or "straw buyer" flushed out or even compilation of data did not deter them from passing the ordinance.

Facts of the matters appear to be "distractions", not useful data for public policy.

5/16/2008 2:00 PM  
Anonymous Mad Saint Jack said...

Is there any information comparing if a criminal conviction was based on physical evidence or witness statements? My gut feeling is that the vast majority of homicide convictions hinge on witness statements.

5/16/2008 5:16 PM  
Anonymous Alec said...

The people who voted, passed, and signed the microstamping law are not stupid or illiterate.

They are simply looking for a way to circumnavigate the 2nd Amendment since they don't have the means to repeal it.

Their hope is that the laws will become so economically onerous that manufacturers will simply stop making firearms for California's specific requirements.

At one time California almost passed a bullet serialization law as well as a $0.10/round ammunition tax. These are the same people who fostered the microstamping law.

5/16/2008 7:18 PM  
OpenID Mike99 said...

In my nearly two decades of experience in law enforcement, not once did I encounter a crime involving a firearm where the identification of the firearm with a given individual played any role in solving that crime, nor was I ever aware of such a crime. This type of "evidence" simply doesn't solve crimes.

Even if such a Rube Goldberg system worked reliably, all it could possibly tell an investigator (and this assumes that every firearm in America is so equipped and is registered in a massive central database) is who the original purchaser of the firearm was. By itself, that proves nothing at all in terms of solving a crime.

Imagine too the incredibly complex, draconian system that would have to be imposed to register and track firing pins, which do wear out and need to be periodically replaced. But of course, that's the point of all this. Schemes like this have nothing whatever to do with suppressing crime or aiding the police and everything to do with harassing law abiding gun owners.

5/16/2008 11:39 PM  

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