Illinois Rep: Put Serial Numbers on Bullets to Fight Chicago Gun Violence

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Illinois state representative Sonya Harper (D-6th) is pushing to require serial numbers on all bullets sold in the state as a way to fight gun violence in Chicago.

She introduced the measure on Tuesday.

According to Fox 32, Harper said, “We just want to know how the guns and the bullets are getting into the hands of our youth and causing senseless harm and murder on our streets.” Her measure would require a unique number on all bullet casings and the base of the bullet itself, so police could theoretically run numbers of recovered bullets/casings to figure out where the ammunition was sold. Officers would then go to the retailer to find out who purchased the ammunition.

Of course, this would require a database of ammunition purchasers to be created, as that is the only way a retailer would have information that could help an officer know who bought a box of ammunition via a cash purchase. It would also raise the price of ammunition by requiring manufacturers to make a special line of ammunition for Illinois residents. Most importantly, the measure would almost certainly fail to solve crimes, as there are untold millions of rounds of ammunition already in possession of criminals, gang members, and others would are likely to be pulling the triggers Representative Harper is focused on. These individuals would simply use their older ammunition and circumvent ammo control laws the way they circumvent gun control laws every day.

It is worth noting that a similar system was in place in Maryland for five years but was abandoned after $15 million was spent and no crimes solved. Breitbart News reported the Maryland system took ballistic fingerprints of firearms through shell casings–this was to theoretically identify the actual gun from which the bullet was fired. It proved to be a waste of money.

AWR Hawkins is the Second Amendment columnist for Breitbart News and political analyst for Armed American Radio. Follow him on Twitter: @AWRHawkins. Reach him directly at


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