7.030-Firearms & Shell Casings
Effective Date: 2/19/2014
This policy applies to all employees who recover firearms and shell casings as evidence.
1. Employees Will Safely Handle Firearms
Employees will handle a firearm as if it were loaded.
- Keep the muzzle pointed in a safe direction
Employees will request assistance if they are unfamiliar with the safe handling of a firearm.
Employees may contact a Homicide/Assault Unit sergeant (phone #4-5550) or detective or the CSI Unit (phone #4-0972) for guidance on preserving DNA evidence on a firearm.
2. Employees Unload Firearms Prior to Submitting Them to the Evidence Unit
If an employee unloads the firearm, they will document the location of each round removed from the firearm (the round’s order in the cylinder, magazine, clip or ammunition feeding device or chamber) in the GO report.
- Employees may use CSI forms:
Employees will not submit a firearm in a sealed container
Exception: The CSI Unit will follow unit policies established with the Evidence Unit.
3. The Firearms Specialist Detective Test Fires Submitted Firearms and Enters Results into IBIS/NIBIN
After 30 days all eligible firearms and shell casings are swabbed for DNA and entered into IBIS/NIBIN unless the assigned follow-up unit requests other forensic testing or examination.
The follow-up unit will send a lab request via email to the WSP lab for forensic testing.
4. Employees Collect Fired Shell Casings
Employees will collect fired shell casings when they reasonably believe the shell casings are associated with a crime.
Employees will describe fired shell casings in the narrative as “FCC” (fired cartridge casing) followed by the caliber and make. (Example: “FCC, with head stamp 9mm Speer”)