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Tag Archives: ballistics

Ballistics: Anarchists and the crime lab

Firearms and toolmark identification have a longer history than most any other forensic science; it dates to the creation of the modern crime lab. The field emerged in the 1920s, when Calvin Goddard and fellow scientists adapted the comparison microscope ...

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Bulletproof?

For Desmond Turner, everything came down to one bullet. Prosecutors had eyewitness testimony, Turner’s own statements and plenty of circumstantial evidence. But no physical evidence tied Turner to the worst mass shooting in Indianapolis history. Except one round of rifle ...

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Ballistics: Beyond the bullet – trajectory and GSR

Firearms tell many tales. Using gunshot residue, the path of spent casings and even trajectory predictions, investigators can determine where a shooter stood in relation to a target. That information could help prosecutors or defense attorneys argue whether an accused ...

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Ballistics glossary: Know the gun lingo

Ballistics: The study of the movement of a projectile through the air, which could include bullets, missiles or other objects. “Ballistic fingerprinting” refers to the forensic science of firearm and bullet analysis. Bullet: A projectile propelled by a firearm. The ...

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Ballistics: On the firing range

At first glance, the St. Louis County Police crime lab looks like any scientist’s cramped office – shelves overflowing with binders and books, bright lamps, microscopes and a wall of manila envelopes containing various specimens to study. Then you see ...

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Ballistics: Questions to ask

Questions to ask a ballistics expert: 1. Are you certified as a firearms examiner by the Association of Firearm and Tool Mark Examiners? 2. Did you clean or alter the crime scene bullets in any way to facilitate comparison? How ...

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Ballistics: Helpful links

Here are some Web resources for those wanting to learn more about ballistics evidence. Firearms Tutorials This comprehensive site from the University of Utah is designed for medical professionals studying pathology, and includes detailed information for professionals who may encounter ...

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A Special Report: Science or fiction? Forensic Evidence on Trial

“Many long-held beliefs about arson have been proven untrue.” “Fingerprint evidence can be unreliable.” “Some lab technicians who conduct tests aren’t well-trained.” Those sentiments come not from a desperate defense attorney but are the thrust of a report by the ...

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