(Received 15 December 1998; accepted 25 October 1999)
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In the forensic science of firearms and toolmark identification, examiners traditionally have drawn conclusions of identity from subjective criteria. This paper critically explores the general validity of one proposed objective-criteria regime—that of counting consecutive matching striations on fired bullets. Practical considerations are discussed, as well as theoretical ones, with both discussions viewed from the perspective of Bayesian logic. It is concluded that drawbacks exist for this particular objective-criteria regime, but that research and logical analysis should continue.
Firearms-Toolmarks Unit, FBI Laboratory, Washington, DC
Stock #: JFS14817J