Few police departments are better at confiscating illegal guns than Washington, D.C.'s Metropolitan Police Department. Every day, teams of officers, often driving unmarked cars, scour the streets looking for people who might be carrying a firearm.
These tactics have helped D.C. police seize thousands of illegal weapons. The aggressive search for guns has come with a cost, however — residents in heavily patrolled neighborhoods say they feel targeted.
Additionally, many suspects charged with gun possession ultimately walk free, according to an analysis of court documents by WAMU and the Investigative Reporting Workshop at American University, leading to more questions about the usefulness of the tactic.
In D.C.'s most violent neighborhoods, officers frequently stop pedestrians and pull cars over, searching for illegal guns.