ATF van deployed in Chicago to help police fight gun violence

CHICAGO -- A van used to solve gun crimes faster is on loan to Chicago through the ATF. It's only here for another three weeks, unless the Mayor and Police Superintendent can convince the Department of Justice that it's needed longer.

Mayor Rahm Emanuel, Senator Dick Durbin (D-Illinois) and Chicago Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson made the announcement Monday at the 9th District police station, 3120 South Halsted Street.

When there's a shooting, Chicago police call the ATF for the National Integrated Ballistic Information Network, or NIBIN. It comes to the scene and helps Chicago police solve a gun crime faster.

CPD has already seen it work by quickly linking shell casings to a national database that pulls up what other crimes the gun in question may have been involved in.

What took days, takes only hours with NIBIN. Senator Durbin is lobbying the Department of Justice to have a unit like this based here.

Also this morning, the first group of new police recruits met at the DuSable Museum of African American History to get cultural awareness training. Mayor Emanuel said it's just like visiting the Holocaust Museum, and is used as a tool to combat bigotry and hatred.

Early this afternoon, a new class of 86 Chicago police recruits will enter the Police Academy. The Mayor says it's part of his commitment to grow CPD by 1,000 officers.