Spent cases


cold dead hands
March 12, 2007, 02:41 AM
Most of us know that MD and CA require that a fired round's case be submitted to the state in terms of new gun purchases. Have you ever considered keeping a spent case after your shooting sessions to "prove" the firearm is yours (kind of like updating finger prints records) should law enforcment be involved in your gun owners ship as lets say... someone managed to steal any one of your guns and commits a felony and is apprehended. Police trace the gun to you because you reported it missing, but they want some further proof of ownership (it could happen considering how many private receiptless sales occur) and TADA, you have your baby's finger print (provided your gun wasn't shot to s%^$ before recovey) as proof.

Yes, no, maybe?

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March 12, 2007, 04:43 AM
Not a bad idea but I would say a serial number would be ok too.

March 12, 2007, 06:38 AM
Problem is I doubt it if they could do anything with it even if they had your original spent case. I am serious. Keep a serial #.

Dr. Dickie
March 12, 2007, 07:12 AM
Fingerprints do not change (well, except for damage to the skin--and in fact, it is that damage that is really most diagnostic).
The "fingerprint" you get from the firing pin on the case is only good so long as the firing pin and chamber remain exactly the same. Change the firing pin, you change the mark. Heck, change the firing pin spring (wear over time) you change the mark. Time makes that useless.
Keeping a spent case to prove the gun is yours, is like keeping a glove to prove you are who you say you are (OJ not withstanding). It the short term, it might be used to eliminate your gun, but a year or so later it is worthless. The serial number is more like your DNA. It is unique (or should be) and it is not going to change (your DNA may have point mutations but that will not effect the method used for matches).

cold dead hands
March 12, 2007, 08:35 PM
That is why I said keeping an up to date case and pointed out that it may do no good if your gun was shot to s@#$ by the thief. At what point did I imply not having a serial number? Post Katrina gun returns required serial# and a sales receipt. See where I am going with this?

March 12, 2007, 09:17 PM
So far MD has never sucessfully matched a gun to a case in their database in real world situations, and it is almost inadmisable in court. The marks on the case after firing vary constantly. Normally ballistic fingerprinting is used mostly to tell how many guns were used at a crimescene if suspected that multiple guns in the same caliber were used, and it can place a gun found shortly after a crime was committed at the scene. Even locating a legal owner using the serial # on a weapon in evidence is only successful about 50% of the time. The best thing to do is to save all the paperwork from the purchase in a locked safe place, and to keep a log of a brief description of each weapon, and the serial #s in a separate safe place.

March 12, 2007, 10:07 PM
Casings arent going to mean anything really. But on the other hand its smart to memorize that guns serial number, and as most criminals are not very smart, have the barrel slugged a few times by a gun smith and have that.
"yes officer, the gun is mine, and oh by the way heres a real nice slug i had my gunsmith push down the barrel 4 years ago"

March 13, 2007, 12:51 AM
I always have lots of fired cases for my guns, I reload them. Wonder what they would do with a case that was fired in two or three different guns?

Keeping an "up to date" fired case, I can't see how it could serve any purpose. If the cops find cases fired from your gun at a crime scene, and you didn't fire them, wouldn't that mean that you don't have the gun anymore? Well, you already know you don't have the gun (if it was stolen you reported it, right?), and since it was reported, they know you don't have the gun any more, so what good would a recent fired case do?

There is no way you are going to get a gun back from the police because you have a case fired from it as sole proof of ownership, so what good would having it do?

And if you are in a situation where you (and your gun) are suspects, then the cops will take your gun, fire it, and try to match it to the cases they have in evidence. You having a recently fired case won't clear you, only the ones the cops fire and compare not matching will clear your gun (and hopefully, you), so it serves no purpose there either.

I may be missing something, I honestly I don;t see what good it would do to keep an "updated" fired case for anything except reloading.

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