AG Platkin Finds Microstamping Technology Viable for Use in Commercial Firearms Following Live-Fire Testing

For Immediate Release: February 28, 2024

Office of the Attorney General
– Matthew J. Platkin, Attorney General
Statewide Affirmative Firearms Enforcement (SAFE) Office
– Ravi Ramanathan, Director


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Microstamping Viability Report | Viability Certification

TRENTON – Attorney General Matthew J. Platkin today announced that, based on both live-fire testing results and existing peer-reviewed studies, microstamping technology is a viable means of matching an expended cartridge case to the weapon from which it was discharged. This finding represents an important step toward establishing a roster of microstamping-enabled commercial firearms, as contemplated by P.L. 2022, c. 57. Governor Phil Murphy signed that law in 2022 to facilitate the rollout and adoption of microstamping technology for firearms made available for sale to the New Jersey public.

Microstamping is a ballistics identification technology. A microstamping-enabled firearm has unique markings engraved on its firing pin, which are then stamped onto expended cartridge casings each time the firearm is fired. Those unique imprints are linked to the firearm’s make, model, and serial number, allowing law enforcement to match spent cartridge casings found at a crime scene to the specific firearm from which they were discharged.

Pursuant to P.L. 2022, c. 57, in August 2023, the Office of the Attorney General issued performance standards and other qualifying criteria that commercial firearms must meet for inclusion on New Jersey’s microstamping-enabled firearms roster. Those standards include qualifications that relate to the technological viability of microstamping technology itself, such as requiring microstamping-enabled firearms to regularly impart an identifying marker on expended cartridge cases, including after firing rounds repeatedly.

“This technology gives law enforcement an innovative tool to identify crime guns and bring perpetrators to justice,” said Attorney General Platkin. “Now that we have certified that this technology is viable, we urge gun manufacturers to adopt microstamping technology in their production facilities and apply for placement on New Jersey’s microstamping-enabled firearms roster.”

In preparation for the opening of the microstamping roster application process in the next few months, Attorney General Platkin has named firearms expert Reinaldo Roldan as the State’s designated Microstamping Examiner. In that capacity, Mr. Roldan will administer the application process consistent with the standards and qualifying criteria issued by the Attorney General’s Office. Once a firearm is approved for inclusion in the microstamping roster, New Jersey gun retailers will be required to make available for sale at least one gun from the roster.

Mr. Roldan is a Senior Investigator with the Statewide Affirmative Firearms Enforcement (SAFE) Office. Mr. Roldan, an Army veteran, previously worked for the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives for 23 years, retiring as a senior Special Agent in the agency’s Newark Field Division. During his service with the ATF, he investigated all manner of gun-related crimes, including international firearms trafficking, and was the supervisory Special Agent of the Crime Gun Intelligence Center for the New York ATF office. In that role, he was cited for his participation in the investigation and subsequent capture of Chelsea bomber Ahmad Khan Rahimi in 2016. Mr. Roldan has a bachelor’s degree from the University of the State of New York and a master’s degree in Cyber and Homeland Security from Fairleigh Dickinson University.

Implementing the microstamping law is one of several initiatives spearheaded by SAFE, a first-in-the-nation office focused on firearms industry accountability. The SAFE Office was established by Attorney General Platkin on July 25, 2022, to exercise the Attorney General’s authority under the firearms public nuisance legislation, P.L. 2022, c. 56, signed into law by Governor Murphy, and to otherwise facilitate the efficient and effective administration of laws pertaining to gun violence.

“Reducing gun violence requires action on the part of our communities and our leaders,” said SAFE Director Ravi Ramanathan. “Attorney General Platkin has made this work a priority, and he recognizes that solving such a far-reaching problem requires bold steps and innovation.”

Other initiatives led by Attorney General Platkin to combat gun violence include the creation of the Division of Violence Intervention and Victim Assistance (VIVA) and the expansion of the statewide Gun Violence Reduction Task Force (GVRTF). Among other things, VIVA provides grants and programmatic support for Community-Based and Hospital-Based Violence Intervention programs to support non-profit service providers in the development and implementation of violence intervention programming with a focus on gun violence. The GVRTF, created by Attorney General Directive, established an intelligence sharing protocol throughout New Jersey’s law enforcement community—inclusive of federal law enforcement partners. Through the GVRTF, law enforcement resources are focused on key violence reduction indicators based on real-time information and data.

The Attorney General’s work in this area complements New Jersey’s multi-pronged approach to tackling gun violence across the State under the leadership of Governor Murphy. Those efforts have included establishing Extreme Risk Protective Orders (also known as “ERPOs” or “red flag” laws) for gun violence protective orders; strengthening background checks; reducing the maximum capacity of ammunition magazines; banning ghost guns; and establishing a partnership with a coalition that includes the States of New York, Pennsylvania, and Connecticut to share crime gun data among law enforcement agencies.


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