Biological- and firearm-related
evidence drying in fume hood
Victim blood and tissue found on firearm/toolmark-related evidence may associate the evidence with the victim.
Examples of evidence items that may be examined for the recovery of biological evidence:
- Shooting victim’s garment(s). In some circumstances, it may be desirable to request the performance of DNA analysis prior to gunshot residue analyses. This would be prudent in cases in which the garment is found separate from the body. Gunshot residue examinations performed prior to biological examination may compromise the value of biological evidence for DNA analysis.
- Knife or other tool. Biological evidence from the victim or suspect may be present.
- Muzzle of a firearm. Deposits of biological evidence may be present as a result of a contact shot.
- Surface of a fired bullet. This is not normally significant if the bullet is recovered during an autopsy; it can be very significant when bullets are found in other parts of a crime scene (e.g., walls, furniture, etc.).
|Biological Evidence on Fired Bullets
|In a scenario such as the classic “drug buy gone bad,” guns are drawn and bullets are fired inside a motel room, passing through various victims into walls, bedding, furniture, etc. As a part of the reconstruction, bullets may be related to a particular firearm through the marks they bear. The bullets may also be related to the victims they passed through based on the blood and tissue trace evidence that is carried from the victim. This can be of great assistance to prosecutors in identifying which suspect to charge with which death in this type of free-for-all, Wild West type of shootout.
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