An inside-out approach to solving more gun crime

March 25, 2011 By Dave Lavallee

A 30-year law enforcement veteran told police, prosecutors, public defenders and federal agents Wednesday that “balancing people, processes and technology” is the best way to overcoming obstacles and gaps during investigations involving gun crimes.

Peter Gagliardi, senior vice president of Forensic Technology Inc. of Quebec, Canada, discussed his “13 Critical Tasks” to solving gun crimes with 90 members of the law enforcement community during a workshop hosted by the Rhode Island State Crime Laboratory at the University of Rhode Island.

Gagliardi, who got his start as a New Haven (Conn.) Housing Authority policeman, spent 24 years with the Federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, retiring in 1999 from his post as special agent in charge of the New York Field Division to join Forensic Technology Inc. and head the company’s law enforcement communication initiatives. The company invented and manufactures the Integrated Ballistics Identification System, which is used by crime labs like Rhode Island’s to upload gun information to a database.

That information is shared through a network called the National Integrated Ballistics Information Network. The bureau funds the IBIS computer-microscope systems in crime labs across the country maintains the NIBIN network.

“My job in the projects of New Haven was best job I ever had because that’s where I learned about people,” Gagliardi said. But during his time with the ATF, he learned about the importance of innovation, processes and technology across federal, state and local law enforcement agencies. He also learned that every piece of evidence in a gun crime is important. He said he has represented Forensic Technology Inc. in 70 countries.

“When you are investigating a bomb scene, you never ignore the hole caused by the blast,” Gagliardi said. “But at a gun crime scene, we often ignore the ballistics evidence. If we ignore that, we may cross a bridge that we may not be able to go back to.”

His talk focused on gun crimes committed by individuals ranging in age from 15 years old to 30 because they usually involve some other criminal activity, such as drug dealing, prostitution, human trafficking and gang related activity. “This crime is usually repetitive and retaliatory in nature,” he said.

“Criminals move and evidence moves, and we have to examine how guns cross multiple jurisdictions,” Gagliardi said.

He talked about a Boston-based case, during which a weapon was used 14 times, including 3 times in Randolph and Brockton, Mass. and in Providence.

He said technology is a tremendous tool in helping different agencies, whether they are federal, state, or local, connect with each other and share gun evidence. But he said that if a gun is seized in Providence and the evidence information is never entered into the IBIS and NIBIN systems, that seizure is not going to help the Boston cop solve a crime committed in his city with the same weapon.

As Gagliardi displayed two maps of New England during his power point presentation, he asked the audience to determine whether the travel of weapons occurs primarily within Rhode Island’s borders or throughout New England. Several answered that Boston is an important link, but they emphasized that New York also has a strong link to Rhode Island.

Each participant received a certificate for completing the workshop and Gagliardi’s book, The 13 Critical Tasks, An Inside-Out Approach to Solving More .

Explore further: Gun safety not part of many parents' conversations with kids

Related Stories

NIST 'Standard Bullet' fights gang violence

January 19, 2007

Researchers at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) have developed a copper bullet designed to help end criminal sprees without once being fired. Crime laboratories can use NIST's "Standard Bullet" to ...

Gun buyers with criminal record likely to offend: study

May 19, 2010

( -- A new UC Davis Health System study finds that handgun buyers, if they have any prior criminal record, go on to commit felonies and violent misdemeanor crimes at much higher rates than law-abiding gun owners ...

Recommended for you

Waiting periods reduce deaths from guns, study suggests

October 17, 2017

(—A trio of researchers with Harvard Business School has found evidence that they claim shows gun deaths decline when states enact waiting period laws. In their paper published in Proceedings of the National Academy ...

Roman theater uncovered at base of Jerusalem's Western Wall

October 16, 2017

Israeli archaeologists on Monday announced the discovery of the first known Roman-era theater in Jerusalem's Old City, a unique structure around 1,800 years old that abuts the Western Wall and may have been built during Roman ...

Human speech, jazz and whale song

October 13, 2017

Jazz musicians riffing with each other, humans talking to each other and pods of killer whales all have interactive conversations that are remarkably similar to each other, new research reveals.


Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

not rated yet Mar 28, 2011
here is a thought - exchange your gun laws with your drug laws - but I suspect a drop in crime is NOT a goal.
not rated yet Mar 28, 2011
It would be funny to see that if everyone is allowed to carry guns, guncrime will go down becuase the risk will be to high to attack someone.
Right now when someones has a gun he can easily kill anyone since guns are not allowed...

Either that, or stop the gun distribution among civilians, which seems impossible for america...

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.