The National Institute of Justice (NIJ) and the Forensic Technology Center of Excellence (FTCoE) will be delivering a four-day, no-cost, virtual Firearm and Toolmarks Policy and Practice Forum on January 11-14, 2022.
It is a pivotal time for the forensic pattern disciplines, especially firearm and toolmark examination. With the implementation of new technologies like 3D virtual microscopy, updates to the language used in testimony and reporting, and new research including black box studies, it is imperative to bring together examiners, researchers, law enforcement officers, lawyers, judges, and policymakers to discuss these changes.
The Firearm and Toolmarks Policy and Practice Forum will explore these new developments, discuss the foundations of firearm and toolmark examination, and address the implementation of new technologies into workflows. Additionally, the Forum will inform firearm and toolmark examiners on the legal issues surrounding firearm testimony and recent court decisions. We expect to convene several hundred criminal justice practitioners representing federal, state, and local agencies as well as subject matter experts from across the United States through this no-cost, online event.
NIJ has identified four main topic areas related to forensic firearm and toolmark analysis to address during the Firearm and Toolmarks Policy and Practice Forum. These include:
- Emerging Technologies
- Legal Aspects
Each day of the Forum will focus on one of the four topics and include a Keynote address, a panel of presenters, and an interactive question and answer session for each. Events are scheduled from 1:00 PM to approximately 4:45 PM EST on January 11-14, 2022. On the Forum’s final day (January 14, 2022), we plan to hold a live panel discussion that will focus on the next steps within the field.