A new program has been created by the ATF aimed at cracking down on crime by helping law enforcement link guns to crimes and criminals.
Localities across the state can share resources with a gun database that tracks what types of guns were used in different crimes.
Esther Hyatt with the Petersburg Police Department says before the system if a gun was used in a crime in Petersburg, and was then used in another crime in another city, officers from that jurisdiction wouldn't have any idea that that gun was connected to another crime.
"Sometimes people don't know how a gun got to an individual that currently had it, even in a crime or even in their home, and every gun, just like every item, has a history," she says. "It gives us the power to get more information not just from our jurisdiction but we can cross check with other localities.
Petersburg is just one of the localities participating, saying the system could be used to piece together and solve many cases, but only if many jurisdictions decide to join.
They're hoping departments not just from Virginia but across the country jump on board.
Copyright 2013 by Young Broadcasting of Richmond