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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 220434 Find in a Library
Title: Characteristics of Head Wounds Inflicted by "Humane Killer" (Captive-Bolt Gun)--A 15-Year Study
Journal: Jounal of Forensic Sciences  Volume:52  Issue:5  Dated:September 2007  Pages:1182-1185
Author(s): Milan Simic M.D., Ph.D.; Dragan Draskovic M.D., Ph.D.; Goran Stojiljkovic M.D., Ph.D.; Radenko Vukovic M.D., Ph.D.; Zoran M. Budimlija M.D., Ph.D.
Date Published: September 2007
Page Count: 4
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This study examined the characteristics of entrance head wounds inflicted by the captive-bolt gun ("humane killer"), the tool widely used for slaughtering animal stock, in Novi Sad, Serbia, during the 15-year period of 1991-2005.
Abstract: Wounds inflicted by captive-bolt guns have specific features that distinguish them from wounds made by other hand firearms. Selected features of the captive-bolt wound--punched round entrance and a double pattern of smoke soiling--depend on the distance and angle of the weapon at the time of firing. Results confirmed that the appearance of the entrance hole and soot deposits--along with differences in shape, location, extent, and density of soot blackening--can be useful in identifying the weapon, the direction of discharge, the shooting distance, and the angle of the muzzle with reference to the frontal and sagittal planes of the victim's head at the moment the weapon is fired. A captive-bolt gun consists of a simple cylindrical metal tube (barrel) with a heavy flange muzzle. A metal bolt placed in its center is launched upon discharge of a blank powder gun cartridge. The tips of the bolts are concave (conically grooved) with very sharp edges, and its front looks like a sharp-edged circular punching tool. After discharge, the bolt is pulled back into the barrel by a withdrawal spring. The study was based on the analysis of captive-bolt wounds in 20 domestic pigs, inflicted in a routine procedure in the city slaughterhouse. The study involved four groups of five animals, which were subjected to variations in angles as the gun was fired while held tightly against the forehead. The findings from this experimental study were compared with autopsies of 29 suicides and 2 homicides with the captive-bolt gun. 7 figures and 15 references
Main Term(s): Criminology
Index Term(s): Ballistics; Comparative analysis; Firearms; Foreign criminal justice research; Injury investigations; Weapons; Yugoslavia
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