The idea that ballistics -- marks made on bullets and casings by the gun they are expelled from -- can be relied upon as evidence is something most of us are familiar with. We've seen it on the CSI shows.
Recently, the Des Moines police became the first Iowa police department to install an in-house machine that can analyze shell casings and access a federal ballistic imaging network to identify potential matches with firearms. Now, that system has been used to match a particular handgun to shell casings found at a robbery scene. As a result, an 18-year-old Ankeny man is facing criminal charges.