Evaluation of the National Integrated Ballistic Information Network

Project Dates: 

Sponsored by the National Institute of Justice (NIJ), ASU’s Center for Violence Prevention is currently collaborating with Sam Houston State University to evaluate the National Integrated Ballistic Information Network. NIBIN is a database managed by the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (BATF) that is composed of forensics ballistics image information. NIBN is the only database that permits nation-wide comparisons of ballistics evidence to determine if evidence from different crimes are associated with a single firearm. Matched evidence or hits produced by NIBIN may produce useful intelligence for investigators and thus improve investigations. A recent review of NIBIN conducted by the National Academy of Sciences noted that there is considerable variation in the implementation of NIBIN at partner sites and that little is known about how NIBIN helps investigations. The project will: 1) Describe the current state of NIBIN implementation; 2) Document the impediments and facilitators of successful NIBIN implementation; 3) Determine the extent to which NIBIN helps investigators solve crimes; and 4) Describe best NIBIN practices for agency implementation and for investigations.

Research Staff

Charles M. Katz, Ph.D.