U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government, Department of Justice.

Threat of the Armed Gunman: Using Firearms Tracing to Reduce Armed Violence

NCJ Number
Police Chief Volume: 77 Issue: 2 Dated: February 2010 Pages: 20,22,24
Benjamin R. Hayes
Date Published
February 2010
This article describes the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives' (ATF) eTrace, firearms trace submission and trace analysis tool.
A method for keeping firearms out of dangerous criminal's hands and keeping officers safe is tracing recovered firearms through eTrace operated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF). An Internet-based firearm trace submission and trace analysis tool, eTrace allows participating agencies to create an aggressive strategy that uses the information about criminals' guns against the criminals themselves. The central purpose of firearms tracing is to assist in determining how a firearm was diverted from lawful commerce into the hands of a criminal. Tracing produces information needed to continue the investigative process. Through eTrace, law enforcement agencies now have a sophisticated tool to fully exploit their recovered gun information. 3 notes