Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation
Law Enforcement > Bureau of Criminal Investigation > Laboratory Division > Firearms and Toolmarks

Firearms and Toolmarks Unit

The manufacturing process uniquely marks firearms, meaning that individual guns can leave distinct marks on any bullets and cartridges fired from them. These marks make it possible to link such evidence back to the originating weapon.

Scientists in the Firearms and Toolmarks Unit conduct ballistics examinations to tie ammunition and related components to particular firearms. Similarly, other such evidence left at a crime scene can be matched back to the originating tool. For example, many valuable items manufactured today, including firearms, have serial numbers die-stamped for identification. When serial numbers are removed and/or obliterated, forensic scientists in the Firearms Unit can utilize a variety of techniques to restore the original serial number.

Firearms and Toolmarks Unit
 

Database notes

A database of serial numbers from guns reported stolen in Ohio, which is operated by the Attorney General’s Office, can be found at this link.

BCI takes part in the National Integrated Ballistics Information Network (NIBIN), a computer-assisted ballistics imaging system that stores and compares images of the unique markings made on fired cartridge cases. NIBIN is also useful in linking crimes previously thought to be unrelated.

Unit Contacts
Mark Losko
London Laboratory
Laboratory Supervisor
740-845-2523 | Mark.Losko@OhioAGO.gov
Cassandra Agosti
Bowling Green Laboratory
Laboratory Supervisor
419-419-3572 | Cassandra.Agosti@OhioAGO.gov
Laura Risdon
Richfield Laboratory
NIBIN Supervisor
234-400-3635 | Laura.Risdon@OhioAGO.gov