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Letter: Response To ‘Schimel Hails Inclusion Of Microstamping’

Regarding your recent article “Schimel Hails Inclusion Of Microstamping,” please consider the following facts.

CoBIS (Combined Ballistic Identification System) was designed to identify guns by creating and using a database of spent cartridges. After 10 years of operation, costing more than $44 million dollars, not a single crime was solved through its use. Hence, Governor Cuomo rightly abandoned this failed and wasteful program. A link to the details is

Now we are urged to support microstamping, which supposedly imprints cartridge cases with the identity of the firearm used. As with CoBIS, microstamping is destined for utter failure because:

1. Revolvers don’t eject spent cartridges; microstamping cannot work for revolvers. This excludes all revolvers from being identified by this proposed method.

2. Microstamping doesn’t exist. No manufacturer presently offers it, nor has it been demonstrated.

3. Proposed microstamping techniques are easily disabled with simple hand tools.

4. Microstamping potentially identifies a gun, not a shooter.

5. Guns from other states will not have microstamping. This excludes a large percentage of the crime guns.

6. Millions of guns already in New York State will be excluded from microstamping because this feature cannot be added.

Proponents want to spend millions of dollars on a conceptually bankrupt idea. As with CoBIS, it promises another 10 years of predictable pointless waste.

Representative Schimel has no knowledge of firearms and her support for microstamping reflects this. She is actually a proponent of an unrealizable fantasy.

Dana Geiger