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Author Topic: State Police Call For Shutting Down Maryland’s IBIS  (Read 34551 times)

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Offline Evan Thompson

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State Police Call For Shutting Down Maryland’s IBIS
« on: March 08, 2005, 10:03:23 PM »
The following article from the American Rifleman is not my views nor those of my agency, but rather for information to those AFTE members who may not receive the American Rifleman.

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March 2005   American Rifleman    Page 71

State Police Call For Shutting Down Maryland’s Ballistic “Fingerprinting” System”

The Maryland State Police Forensic Sciences Division has called for scrapping the state’s ballistic- imaging program, the Maryland Integrated Ballistics Identification System (MD- IBIS), stating it has found the system to be an ineffective tool for law enforcement.

The program has cost the taxpayers of Maryland more than $2.5 million, but has produced no results. “There have been no crime investigations that have been enhanced or expedited through the use of MD-IBIS,” the report says. “The program simply has not met the expectations and does not aid in the Mission statement of the Department of State Police?’   “This report proves what we have been saying all along,” commented
NRA-ILA’s Chris W Cox. “Ballistic fingerprinting is not a useful law-enforcement tool and is simply another attempt by those who would take away our Second Amendment rights to interfere with the ownership of firearms by law-abiding people?’.  

The new report provides detailed information on the failure of the system, including the system’s failure on four  blind proficiency tests to match test-fired cartridges from handguns sold in the state.   In addition to looking at the failures of the system in Maryland, the report also looked at the system in the state of New York (CoBIS) and found that it has been no more successful. “[T]he CoBIS system has collected and imaged 77,194
handguns at a cost in excess of $14 million. There have been ‘0’ hits registered,” the report stated. “Additionally, it has been reported that the system is routinely bypassed due to known flaws?’  In the end, the Maryland State Police report provides three primary
recommendations:
1.) discontinue the program and moth-ball the equipment;
2.) enact legislation repealing the current law to require collection of casings; and
 3.) transfer personnel and funds to the state DNA database program.

The report concludes that MD-IBIS  “has not proven to be a time saving tool for the Firearms Examiner or an investigative enhancement to the criminal investigator.  It has simply failed in the Mission and Vision concepts originally established for the Program.”

“NRA sincerely hope the legislature of Maryland and Governor Ehrilich will heed the recommendations in this report and repeal this expensive, ineffective and intrusive program,” Cox said.  “It is time that the millions of dollars of taxpayer money be put to better use and, more importantly, that the Second Amendment rights of the people of Maryland be restored.”
Evan Thompson
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Never live a life gray
928-607-6123

Online Cole

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State Police Call For Shutting Down Maryland’s IBIS
« Reply #1 on: March 09, 2005, 07:29:24 AM »
It's pretty unclear in the article, but this is referring to the program to enter cartridge cases from all handguns sold in the state, right?
The views expressed here do not necessarily reflect the views of anyone, anywhere, ever - including the author.

Offline Scott Doyle

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Latest News on MSP Ballistics Program
« Reply #2 on: March 09, 2005, 07:48:36 AM »
Lawmaker Questions MSP Head's Gun Stance
State Police Superintendent, As Former Delegate, Voted Against Database

POSTED: 6:19 pm EST March 7, 2005
UPDATED: 8:20 pm EST March 7, 2005

ANNAPOLIS, Md. -- A state lawmaker holds the state's top law enforcement officer at issue for his recommendation to kill the state police ballistics fingerprinting program.

Howard County Delegate Neil Quinter, D-District 13, charges that state police Superintendent Col. Tim Hutchins' decision may have been influenced by the powerful pro-gun lobby, WBAL-TV 11 News reporter David Collins reported.
 
Guns leave a ballistic fingerprint, and spent shell casings have a unique mark. State police contend the program wasn't working, but supporters said the program should be given a chance, Collins said.

Since 2000, the Maryland State Police were supposed to be collecting test-fired casings from every gun sold in the state and entering the information into a database. The program was intended to help investigators match shell casings found at crime scenes with guns sold in the state.

But Hutchins recommended killing the program last month, claiming the system doesn't work.

Critics disagree, citing poor management.

"They have allowed manufacturers to put faulty cartridges into the system," said Josh Horowitz, the executive director of the Coalition to Stop Gun Violence.

Quinter suggested that the National Rifle Association, which opposes the database, convinced Hutchins to kill the program, Collins reported.

 Video: David Collins Reports: MSP Superintendent's Political History At Issue

Before his appointment, Hutchins served as a member of the House of Delegates from 1995 to 2003 -- a Republican representing Charles County's District 28. During his tenure, he voted against creating a ballistics database, Collins reported.

"At this point, I can only observe the coincidence of his voting against establishing the program, taking over the state police, and then after taking over the state police, there's a complete change in position by that organization," Quinter said.


Howard County Delegate
Neil Quinter, D-District 13
 
Campaign finance records indicate that the NRA gave Hutchins $500 in 2003 for his campaign in the House of Delegates, and gun manufacturer Berretta also contributed $500, Collins reported.

Records indicate that the gun lobby gave $14,000 to the Republican Party since 1999. Quinter cites a strong connection between the NRA and state police.

"The report that they (the state police) just issued cites, for its authority, the Web sites of local NRA-type groups," Quinter said.

Quinter compared the number of positive matches in the ballistic database with the state's DNA program. In each of their first five years, there were more ballistics hits.

He argued, like the DNA database, the ballistics database needs more time to develop.

"Maryland's ballistic database should be continued based on its record of success," Quinter said.

A hearing considering funding is scheduled for Wednesday.

Offline L. M. Kogler

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State Police Call For Shutting Down Maryland’s IBIS
« Reply #3 on: March 09, 2005, 10:01:39 AM »
Oh, I love this... the system has either "produced no results" or has a "record of success."  

Hey, Scott, I can't find the smiley hitting itself in the head with the hammer -- could you bring it back or do you think it would be overused?
L. M. Kogler

Offline Jeff Schaub

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Hey, it's Maryland
« Reply #4 on: March 11, 2005, 04:14:51 PM »
There are more problems with that whole issue than the papers care to print.  I could not do the agrument any justice.  I will let the Maryland State Folks fill you in -- they have the first hand knowledge.  Suffice it to say that our administration is asking us all kind of questions about it...

From my perspective, the problem is a lack of communication.  While we all would like to see NIBIN/IBIS improve -- call me an optomist, but I feel that IBIS will get better -- the NIBIN/IBIS seems to have some success.  We (Baltimore County) frequently make hits with Baltimore City.  MD State Police has a stand alone (not networked to anything) system.  It is into this system that the fired components from new guns are entered.  The stand alone system has not solved any cases to my knowledge.  Our IBIS/NIBIN systems have probably had about as much success as yours.  That is the success that the representative talks about.  He seems to have no idea that there is a stand-alone system as well as the networked system OR he assumes that since they look the same, they are the same.

Remember this is all coming from certain elected officials and their liberal ally in the press.
"We will always remember. We will always be proud. We will always be prepared, so we will always be free."  - Ronald Reagan

MTakacs

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State Police Call For Shutting Down Maryland’s IBIS
« Reply #5 on: March 12, 2005, 11:10:50 AM »
Jeff,

It appears that their are a lot of misinformed people in MD on the subject of "Ballistic Fingerprinting"......I wonder how they got so misinformed or why they have not been properly educated?

But, let me stop... before I say something wrong.

It is funny that they don't know that the "MD new gun" system and the "criminal system" are the exact same hardware and software.  The difference being one system starts with criminal evidence and the other system starts with non-criminal evidence!!!!!!!

Hey.......look at that....you might think that someone would put a positive twist on it and say that it was a good thing that no success was achieved since that meant that "law abiding gun purchasers" did not have their guns ending up in crimes!!!!!!

But let me stop again.......as the real reasons that this was a flop is that the wrong people are running the show......oops.

Let me stop here......as heaven for bid we do something the right way.
Egos first and then maybe we can think about what the real purpose is and who is best suited and knowledgeable about how to do it.

D@mn, didn't I say I was not going to say anything.
Chris, If you need to know something more about this....give me a shout.

Mark

Offline Michael Haag

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Yes!
« Reply #6 on: March 13, 2005, 09:23:02 AM »
Amen, Mark, on the point about law abiding citizens.  We'll never hear that one on the news, eh?
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Offline Rick Wyant

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State Police Call For Shutting Down Maryland’s IBIS
« Reply #7 on: March 15, 2005, 03:35:10 PM »
I would like to see FTI/ATF do a study following hits to arrests that are made.

 

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