The Violent Crime Analysis Branch (VCAB) provides ATF and its law enforcement partners with useful and accurate statistical information on crime guns, explosives and arson. VCAB gathers large amounts of criminal intelligence data from various sources and generates detailed analytical reports to identify criminal activity trends. This data is used by law enforcement agencies to support criminal investigations, prosecute individuals, reduce violent crime and protect the public.
VCAB staff use a variety of sources and technologies to detect trends and patterns. They use statistical software and geographic information system (GIS) tools to analyze and represent data from various ATF databases, including licensee populations, firearms tracing, violent crime data, explosive and arson incidents, and thefts of firearms from federal licensees.
All external requests for VCAB reports are submitted through the local ATF field office. VCAB produces a wide range of reports, including the following:
- Firearm Trace Studies identify the history of a firearm from its creation at the manufacturer through the entire supply chain, along with any criminal-related use.
- Explosives and Arson Studies analyze trends and data about the use of explosive compounds and arson activities.
- Mapping Studies highlight geographic hot spots that are experiencing spikes in criminal activities.
- Data Extracts are compilations of violent crime data based on incidents in local areas across the nation.