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Police to unveil new gun crime tool as Cedar Rapids shooting drop in 2021

Published: Jul. 5, 2021 at 1:25 PM CDT
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CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (KCRG) - Police are set to unveil a new tool to combat shootings in Cedar Rapids as gun violence is dropping from a record high last year.

Through the first half of 2021, Cedar Rapids Police have investigated 59 incidents of gunfire compared to 77 in 2020 but that’s still on pace to surpass the 5-year average of 114 shots fired incidents per year. Last year set a record high for shots fired in Cedar Rapids with 163.

On Thursday, police will unveil a new tool in the fight to curb gun violence: National Integrated Ballistic Information Network Technology (NIBIN). That network developed through the ATF (Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms) allows police to analyze and share ballistics information nationally to connect bullets and guns to crimes and criminals. Federal Prosecutors have used it in Iowa already to convict criminals in gun crimes, calling the network “a proven investigative and intelligence tool that can link firearms from multiple crime scenes, allowing law enforcement to quickly disrupt shooting cycles.”

Right now, the Iowa DCI is the only agency in Iowa part of the network - Cedar Rapids would be the second.

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