If the current trend toward relaxation of concealed-weapons laws continues, soon the most important gun restrictions may involve destinations: the states will probably allow various venues--public gathering places, offices, stores--to ban firearms on the premises. The only problem will be how to know who is packing heat.

As it happens, two weeks ago the Justice Department funded a $2.15 million answer. Under the supervision of the National Institute of Justice, the department's R. and D. branch, three laboratories will develop prototypes for concealed-weapons detectors. Within 18 months, predicts NIJ technology chief David Boyd, they should have produced a device that can...

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