SHOT Show 2008 was a must see for anyone with firearms or outdoor sports equipment in their sights. But those targeting forensics investigation were not left wanting. A range of products aimed at technical investigations also could be found in the 1,970 booths covering 715,000 square feet of floor space at the Las Vegas Convention Center, February 2-5.Forensics Source
BAE Systems of Jacksonville, Florida, recently acquired Armor Forensics then subsequently renamed the company, gave it a new Web site, and expanded its line by combining Lightning Powder, NIK, ODV, Identicator, Evi-Paq and Projectina under a single banner. With more than 3,000 products in its arsenal, Forensic Source's catalog now includes tools for the crime lab as well as the crime scene investigator such as Projectina comparison microscopes, forensic light sources, ducted and ductless fume hoods, and DNA lab supplies.
Perma-Gel Ballistic Gelatin is another Forensic Source product offering. This is the room-temperature, crystal clear, ballistic gel that was announced at the 2007 SHOT Show, but the product lacked a distributor until Forensics Source arrived. While Perma-Gel has a slightly different effect than traditional ballistics gelatin, it merely presents a learning curve for the user, who must learn to interpret the results. Here, the benefits offset the learning curve, and include the ability to use the gel at normal temperatures and reuse it by re-melting and recasting. The gel also withstands bacteria at room temperature.
In addition, the company offers the Bootie Box. Every time an investigator enters a major scene he should don new shoe covers to prevent cross contamination. The Bootie Box simplifies this issue. Users just step into the box and a new shoe cover snaps onto their shoe. Refills of 30 covers are available.Visualock
Firearms security is a serious subject, and nowhere is it more important than in the courtroom, where a firearm seized as evidence must be rendered inoperative to prevent its use in a criminal escape attempt. Traditionally, firearms evidence has been secured by cable ties, ranging from typical electrical ties to heavy-duty flex cuffs. However, these methods still lend themselves to defeat in the courtroom.
VisualLock of Loveland, Colorado, offers a tool that renders a firearm inoperative but only shows up as a red button at the muzzle. The lock consists of a solid brass "cartridge" into which fits a rod the length of the firearm barrel. This attaches to a red end, which fits over the muzzle crown, and into which a key must be inserted to lock or unlock the device.
The device is available for more than 130 calibers ranging from .22LR through .50 BMG, with a variety of different rod lengths to permit use in almost any firearm. Custom brass cartridges may be manufactured for unusual chambering.Chapman Industries
Whether a SWAT operator preparing for an entry, a field force facing a riotous crowd, a bomb technician approaching an IED, or a clandestine lab team investigating a meth lab, flames may put these officials in grave danger. CarbonX, a product of Chapman Innovations of Salt Lake City, Utah, takes flame protection to a new level.
This fabric withstands heat and flame to 3,000 degrees Fahrenheit. Company reps routinely illustrate its capabilities by lighting up a butane torch and first impinging another fire-resistant fabric with the flame, only to have it quickly burn through. They then lay a piece of CarbonX over their own hand and directly impinge the flame to the fabric, with no damage.
CarbonX is used by a growing list of protective clothing manufacturers, especially those in the fire service and auto racing industries. Shop around for coveralls, balaclavas and gloves using this fabric.DHS Technologies