Practical Analysis and Reconstruction of Shooting Incidents (e-Book) book cover

Practical Analysis and Reconstruction of Shooting Incidents

By Edward E. Hueske, Edward E. Hueske

Series Editors: Vernon J. Geberth, Vernon J. Geberth

© 2005 – CRC Press

352 pages | 187 B/W Illus.

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The ultimate goal of collecting, preserving, and examining physical evidence is individualization - associating each piece with its responsible source. Firearms evidence in particular has the potential to individualize its source. Accessible and comprehensive, Practical Analysis and Reconstruction of Shooting Incidents provides the foundation necessary to develop and sharpen the skills used to investigate shooting incidents. It provides an explanation of what constitutes pertinent evidence and appropriate results pertaining to autopsies, forensic laboratory analysis, and reenactments. The text also reviews basic firearm design, function, ammunition components, and the terminology required for understanding evidence encountered at the scene.

The book explains the basic mathematics of shooting reconstruction and includes sample problems at the end of each chapter. It presents case studies that feature those involving the John F. Kennedy and Robert F. Kennedy assassinations. It also details proper photographic documentation and effective courtroom techniques used to present the results of shooting reconstructions to juries, with examples of acceptable demonstrative evidence.

Arming the investigator with the means to successfully examine and evaluate what transpired at the scene, Practical Analysis and Reconstruction of Shooting Incidents is an important resource to have accessible at all times.

Table of Contents

Theory and Practice of Shooting


§ Shooting Reconstruction and the Scientific Method

§ On-Scene Evidence: Evaluation and Documentation

§ Off-Scene Evaluation and Investigation

§ Goal of Shooting Reconstruction

§ Limitations of Shooting Reconstruction

§ Reenactment as Part of Reconstructing Shooting Incidents

§ Developing Time Lines

§ Exercises

§ Suggested Readings

Mathematics of Shooting Reconstruction

§ Trigonometry, Geometry, and Shooting Incident Analysis

§ Calculation of Impact Angles

§ Other Calculations

§ Distorted Bullet Base Measurements

§ Exercises

§ Suggested Readings

Firearms and Ammunition Components

§ Firearms Categories and Nomenclature

§ Ammunition Components

§ Scene Documentation of Weapons

§ Exercises

§ Suggested Readings

Shooting Reconstruction Equipment and Use

§ Documentation of Bullet Holes at Shooting Scenes

§ Trajectory Rods and Use at Shooting Scenes

§ Bullet Hole Basics

§ Types of Trajectory Rods

§ Trajectory Rod Accessories

§ Other Required Equipment

§ Substrate Considerations

§ Proper Trajectory Rod Placement

§ Uneven, Curved Surfaces

§ Rod Extension via Laser

§ Use of Lasers without Trajectory Rods

§ Proper Examination and Documentation

§ Key Points to Remember

§ Tripod-Mounted Lasers

§ Total Data Stations

§ Chronographs

§ Specialized Equipment for Shooting Reconstruction

§ Exercises

§ Suggested Readings

Cartridge Case Ejection Pattern Testing

§ Testing Considerations

§ Methodology

§ Interpretation of Results

§ Problems

§ Suggested Readings

Shot Pattern Analysis and Testing

§ Approximating Muzzle-to-Target Distance

§ Angle of Impact Estimation

§ Test Firing

§ Graphical Analysis

§ Shot Shell Buffer and Distance Estimation

§ Reporting of Results

§ Exercises

§ Suggested Readings

Examination and Testing of Weapons

and Ammunition Components

§ Trace Evidence Examination

§ Function Testing

§ Accuracy Determination

§ Rate of Fire Determination

§ Exercises

§ Suggested Readings

Gunshot Residue Testing

§ Gunshot Residue Sources

§ Primer Residues and Shooter Determination

§ Particles Considered "Characteristic" of GSR

§ Particles Considered "Unique" to GSR

§ Muzzle-to-Target Distance Approximation Testing:

§ Inanimate Objects

§ Collection of Gunshot Residue from Fixed

§ Inanimate Objects

§ Procedure

§ Muzzle-to-Target Distance Approximation Testing:

§ HumanTissue

§ Paraffin Test

§ Determination of Time since Discharge

§ Case Study

§ Exercises

§ Suggested Readings

Bullet Hole and Wound Characteristics

§ Bullet Holes in Clothing and Underlying Tissue

§ Reconciling Bullet Holes in Clothing with Underlying

§ Wounds

§ Bullet Holes in Glass and Glass Injuries

§ Glass Evidence Checklists

§ Determination of Directionalities of Shots

§ Determination of Shot Sequence

§ Glass Evidence Collection

§ Documentation of Bullet Holes in Glass

§ Glass Injury Documentation

§ Side Glass Position Determination

§ Test Firing for Confirmation Purposes

§ Bullet Holes in Tires and Other Elastic Materials

§ Documentation

§ Case Study

§ Exercises

§ Suggested Readings

Bullet Ricochet Phenomena

§ Terms Associated with Ricochets

§ Producing Ricochet

§ Directionality Based on Point of Impact

§ Other Indicators of Directionality

§ V Shape

§ Fracture Lines on Painted Surfaces

§ "Classic" Ricochet Mark

§ "Pear" Effect

§ Ricochet Crease Profiles

§ Ricochet with Partial Penetration

§ Internal Ricochet

§ Ricochets off Glass

§ Direction of Twist Determination from Ricochet Mark

§ Establishing Critical Angles

§ Establishing Ricochet Angles

§ Establishing Deflection Angles

§ Establishing Shooter Position

§ Documentation

§ Evidence of Ricochet

§ Case Study

§ Exercises

§ Suggested Readings

Bloodstains and Blood Spatter

at Shooting Scenes

§ Blood Characteristics and Drop Formation

§ Blood Spatter Associated with

§ Blood on Hands of Shooter

§ Blood on Objects at Shooting Scene

§ Non-Gunshot Dynamics That Mimic High Velocity

§ Impact Blood Spatter

§ Blood and Use in Timeline Development

§ Case Studies

§ Case 1: Blood Solves a Shooting

§ Case 2: Bloodstains and Lividity Contradict

§ a Suspect's Story

§ Exercises

§ Suggested Readings

Officer-Involved Shootings

§ General Considerations

§ Protocol for Officer-Involved Shooting

§ Unintentional Discharge of Weapon

§ Accidental Discharge of Weapon

§ Suicide by Cop

§ Case Studies

§ Attempted Suicide by Cop

§ Charles Whitman and the University of Texas

§ Tower Incident

§ Exercises

§ Suggested Readings

Case Analysis

§ General Considerations

§ Shot Accounting

§ Recognizing Staged and Misrepresented Crime Scenes

§ Off-Scene Analysis of Crime Scene Data

§ Homicide-versus-Suicide Issues

§ Common Misconceptions

§ Importance of Obtaining Participant Information

§ Shots Fired into Vehicles

§ Vehicle Bullet Hole Documentation

§ and Trajectory Analysis

§ Case Studies

§ Case 1

§ Case 2

§ Case 3

§ Suggested Readings


§ Introduction

§ Internal Ballistics

§ External Ballistics

§ Terminal Ballistics

§ Common Misconceptions Regarding Wound Ballistics

§ Sound Suppressors

§ Case Study

§ Suggested Readings

Firearms and Ammunition Reference

Collections and Other Resources

§ Firearms and Ammunition Reference Collections

§ Databases and Software

§ Vehicle Information

§ Architectural Information

§ Weather and Meteorological Data

§ Bullet Trajectory Data

§ Imagery

§ Crime Scene Software

§ References

Report Writing, Demonstrative Evidence,

and Courtroom Presentation

§ Standard Reporting Formats

§ Suggested Summation Report Format

§ Photographic Images, Drawings, and Diagrams

§ Full-Scale Reproductions

§ PowerPoint Presentations

§ Court Testimony

§ Suggested Readings



About the Series

Practical Aspects of Criminal and Forensic Investigations

Learn more…

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
LAW / Forensic Science