Prosecutors thank MIT grad students for help in gun cases.

Two MIT graduate students have been honored by the Suffolk…

Two MIT graduate students have been honored by the Suffolk County district attorney’s office for testifying as expert witnesses about a high-tech thermal imaging camera that can show whether a gun has been recently held by “seeing” the residue of heat on it.

Conley’s office presented plaques on Friday to Priam Pillai and Adam Wahab, who are pursuing doctorates at the university, for their work with the DA’s Gun Prosecution Task Force.

When the Bullard TI Commander camera is pointed at a recently discarded handgun, the body heat retained by the gun can be seen, prosecutors said. This can be used to confirm an officer’s observation that a suspect had just discarded the gun and rebut a claim that the gun had just been lying there.

After Boston Police purchased the camera several years ago, prosecutors reached out to experts at MIT and went through a series of legal steps to get Pillai and Wahab, who both have master’s degrees, qualified as expert witnesses.

Suffolk District Attorney Daniel F. Conley said the two students had put a “powerful tool” in the prosecutors’ toolbox.


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