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NIBIN Database

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) established and began administrating the National Integrated Ballistic Information Network (NIBIN) in 1999.  Prior to NIBIN, the BCA supported the FBI’s DRUGFIRE database from 1998 to 2002.  The BCA has partnered with the ATF and to enter information into NIBIN.  The BCA’s Firearm and Toolmark Section in St. Paul has an Integrated Ballistic Identification System IBIS® TRAX terminal and routinely enters images of fired evidence into the database.  The NIBIN database allows forensic scientists to associate different crime incidents and generate investigative leads for law enforcement agencies in Minnesota.
 IBIS Station Search

The firearm examiners and technician acquire digital images of the markings made on fired ammunition components recovered from a crime scene or test fired from an evidence firearm.  The scientists then compare their images against images of earlier NIBIN entries.  If a potential match or “hit” is recognized, the original physical evidence is retrieved for a firearms examiner to conduct a comparative examination to determine if the items of evidence were fired in the same firearm.

                                           IBIS Comparison